Yana’s collection is inspired by the visual aspect of physical changes that occur with time: especially wrinkles and the transformation of the body’s shape. Her work is based on her personal feelings provoked by the ageing process of her own skin and the anticipation of its future changes.
According to Yana’s research there are two main opinions formed by social norms as well as personal feelings. One of them is positive: age is viewed as something to be proud of, as a testimony of valuable experiences and the visible part of our personality. But like her, many others link the body transformed with age to negative emotions such as feelings of shame, discomfort and sadness. By showing off aged skin we show off intimate traces of our individual lives and become vulnerable. We view it as a legacy of passed time, marked with wrinkles that show our physical weakness, lack of control and degradation.
Through her pieces age and the aged body itself become pieces of jewellery. By abstractly interpreting the aesthetics of aged skin Yana was able to depersonalise and generalise it, making it suitable for a variety of wearers. At the same time this abstraction allowed her to idealise its aesthetics creating a positive image of age.
The wearer of Yana’s pieces is able to try on age, but the perception of it is positively transformed. The wearer’s current body is encapsulated in a hull of their possible future transformation. Yet instead of flattering the wearer’s body and highlighting its features it replaces the living body with its idealised representation, that is therefore stiffer, heavier and more restricting than the wearers real body.
The exhibits at the Medical Pathology Museum of Tokyo University acted as Yana’s main source of inspiration. The pieces are real Yakuza skins donated to the museum by their owners after their death. Looking at these pieces she asked herself what her own full - back tattoo will look like in a few decades.
Looking further into the topic she discovered that, contrary to the common opinion an old tattoo is unsightly, tattoos are able to rejuvenate the appearance of aged skin by covering up its texture. As a result her nude coloured male piece combines both: tattoos and wrinkles, showing that the natural and unnatural marks of time are able to complement each other. The size of the piece is also specific to the male body; as it tends to show less traces of age Yana decided it should cover a larger area showing the interrelation of several parts. Its silhouette resembles the shape of the real Yakuza skins. The female pieces represent smaller body parts, highlighting these areas specifically.