Biography of Lisa Yuskavage
The distinctive and wildly inventive artworks of Lisa Yuskavage are celebrated for their lavish, erotic, and mystical human figures. Producing just 5 paintings every two years, the artist’s work is always in high demand and a single piece can fetch more than $1 million at auction.
Lisa Yuskavage’s artworks appear to marshal a clear, accessible visual coherence whilst at the same time appearing elusive and distant. A sense of voyeurism pervades much of her work, as the sexually overt women who fill the canvases delight in their own sexuality. The psychological complexity of each artwork is further enhanced by her original and distinctive use of color. Often cast in fantastical landscapes, her angelic figures are produced using both traditional and contemporary painterly techniques. Her career as a painter has largely coincided with the re-emergence of figurative painting in Contemporary Art.
Born in Philadelphia in 1962, Lisa Yuskavage finished her M.F.A. from the Yale University School of Art in 1986. Her work can often provoke ambivalent responses in the minds of the critics, who see vulgarity and elegance, “alienation and affection” in equal measure. Such contrasting reactions is music to the ears of the artist, who once stated “I only load the gun”, as a response to those who seek answers in her artwork.
Lisa Yuskavage’s work can be found in the permanent collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York and the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague. She has had notable solo exhibitions all over the world, including at the Rose Art Museum in Massachusetts in 2015, the Royal Academy of Arts in London in 2002, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia in 2000. She has been involved in innumerable group shows including at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 2007 and the 2000 Whitney Biennial also in New York in 2000.