Yochi Shrem Artist Statement
In my work of recent years, I have been trying to create a dialogue between the world of technology and science and between craftwork, which is unique, irreproducible, and is connected to history, identity, and feminist works.
In my large installations, I delve into the digital and biotechnological revolution that is changing our lives. My works illuminate concerns and fears of an unknown future and its effect on us, our memories, bodies, emotions, and interpersonal communications, as well as the climate, genetics, and our planet. For example, the installation "Human Tapestry" is about human genetics and the relationship between humans and machines. In that work, I combined the metal outlines of body parts with colorful handmade knits that mimicked the appearance of DNA tissue and moved with the help of hidden engines.
The installation "Almost Natural" discusses the way our brain is undergoing evolutionary changes, and our memory, much like other parts of the brain, degenerates over time. At the center of the installation, there was a large and colorful waterfall of hand-knitted shapes, and placed in Perspex boxes, were knitted pieces that had undergone a process of 'degeneration' and had gradually faded and lost their vitality. In another artwork, "Self-portrait as an Avatar", which is made of an iron net and knits, I scanned my face into a 3D software while expressing emotions such as laughter, fear, and terror. The software detected these emotions by coloring the movement of the muscles but actually 'failed' to recognize facial expressions. On the one hand, the work was done using the most advanced digital software, and on the other hand, it involved knitting – a historic laborious craft that is a demonstration of inimitable human touch.
In the artwork "Happy Genetics", I took my interest in genome mapping one step further into the newest research field of Epigenetics that touches upon trauma and history as part of genetics. The colorful genes are made of Crochet hanging upside down. They do not emerge like plants from the ground up, but resemble Hydroponic, artificial, and rootless vegetation.