“The notion of familiarity conjures up a feeling of sustainable silence, so it seems no coincidence that the term also shares an etymological root with family. What does it mean, after all, for two consciousnesses (or more) to share a room, a home, a life? Aren’t the unspoken and unheard undeniable mainstays? In Yolanda del Amo’s large-format double portraits, which are a part of her ongoing series ‘Archipelago,’ that domestic silence
- whether between partners, husband and wife, or mother and child - is our point of entry, functioning both as psychic space and as constructed narrative. To wit, silence can palpably enact a gulf between one couple (‘Rafael, María Jesús’) as readily as it can comfort and intimacy between another (‘Winfried, Brigitte’).
“Del Amo, who in the past has played with the juxtaposition of text and image as both dialogue and narrative, is a natural storyteller, but she is not interested necessarily in capturing a ready fiction we will respond to. Instead, her images build and sustain an atmosphere of inquiry and ambiguity. When we leave these images, we may venture to supply a pair of intertwined stories that could be spun backwards and forwards in time, rich and sumptuous in their possibilities.” Debora Kuan