montages for himself with clippings from magazines while moonlighting
“i noticed that in the abstract corners of the image of a tintype there’s
as a freelance illustrator for The New York Times. during that same period this wonderful texture and patina, and in the end pages of books there’s
an illness put him in bed for six weeks and he took up engraving, inspired this aging process and to me it looks like a piece of art,” he says. “i have
by an exhibition of Joseph Cornell’s collages, which also appeared in a love for the old and the new—i love old architecture—and i just started
combining my photographs with these textures i’d find.”
“engraving collages was pretty exciting, but relying on other people's
the resulting abstractions, which he considers “paintings,” digitally
work for the photo montages wasn’t as interesting to me, so i decided transform a familiar city block—like his 2007 image Eighth Avenue,
that i should start using my own photographs,” says Yankus. “eventually it delicately altered with photos from the cover of a book he bought in
just organically happened: i was a photographer.” a photographer who prague in 1998—into some idyllic gotham vantage as imagined by Jane
started raking in assignments for a-list monthlies (The Atlantic), Broadway Jacobs or henry James.
posters (Doubt) and book covers for literary titans like salman rushdie,
“there’s always an awareness of composition. when i’m looking
francine prose and Jeffrey eugenides. “One author had his maid through the lens, if i’m photographing the street, i’m looking at how the
approve the art,” says Yankus with a laugh. “she must have good taste.” shapes of the buildings fit,” says Yankus. “But adding the texture changes
as his editorial career blossomed, so did the scope of his art practice, the mood and the darks and the lights and the density and the color.
which married his collaging obsession with a love for found objects. something magical happens.”
Vintage cabinet cards, old tin types and antique books—he would buy
nevertheless, Yankus has chosen to table that particular strain of
these curiosities at flea markets, later photograph them and layer over magic for his forthcoming exhibition, opening november 3 at new York’s
landscapes of Manhattan and upstate new York.