Yishay Garbasz Intersectional Art as Activism: An Interview with Yishay Garbasz

Berlin Art Link Aug 31, 2020

Alison Hugill: You often speak about how your identity, as an artist and a person, is forged in trauma. How does this affect the process and outcome of your work?

Yishay Garbasz: In order to see the world outside me, I have to see the world inside me: it’s about polishing the mirror. Once you move aside the personal junk, it allows you to see things more clearly. My experience of being abused and of intergenerational trauma shaped how I see things. For people who have not experienced that, these things are invisible. But it’s not the only thing that I am sensitized to because of my lived experience.

I spent three years on crutches due to an injury. The funny thing is, when you ask someone how many steps lead to their house, it’s almost a formula: when they say there are no steps, that means there’s five steps. If they say five steps, it’s one floor up. It’s the invisibility thing: people just don’t register it because it doesn’t affect them. And that’s what trauma and disability and other marginalizing factors do – if you don’t experience them, they are invisible to you. These intersections affect my work fundamentally. They aren’t an interest of mine, they are my life. I see the steps clearly.

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