Y A R L i   A L L i S O N

  /   林 雅 莉
  /   Surname - Lam
  /   Born 1988 Ontario, Canada / Raised in Hong Kong
  /   Currently lives and works in London, UK

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Yarli composes fictitious worlds that 'attempted to make sense but failed'. By asking 'what ifs', Yarli reimagines new ways of living as her own survival tactics. Being identified as a nomad, queer*, Asian in the western civilization, she develops a pattern of obsessive problem-solving that aims to resonate with social constructs we survive in, and to absurdly solve the unfulfilled desire of belonging.

Utilizing the juxtaposed archived artifacts and first-handed experiences, she references cognitive-behavioral and ergonomic theories to invent coping tools - whether or not those tools are able to solve the corresponding crisis. With an intuition of play, Yarli's aesthetic language often returns to creating enclosed spaces with discoverable holes, seemingly functional objects that are obviously futile (in reality), and strong raw-handcrafted traces emphasizing accidents in the making.


Yarli is a Hong Kong-Canadian born, London-based artist with a multidisciplinary approach that traverses sculpture, performance, digital, film, drawing and installation.

Yarli graduated in 2017 with an MFA in Sculpture from The Slade School of Fine Art , University College London, UK, with the entry award of the year’s Yitzhak Danziger scholarship.

Recent solo exhibitions at Annka Kultys Gallery, London; Visual Artists Ireland’s New Spaces; and awarded as a resident artist in Academic of Visual Arts, HKBU, Hong Kong (all in 2018).

Yarli was selected as one of the Canadian artists to be presented at The State Hermitage Museum's Young Artists Program in St. Petersburg and 30 Under 30 at The Gardiner Museum, Toronto (2014). She has exhibited at TAF_The Art Foundation, Athens (2018) and internationally in Venice, Hong Kong, New York, Madrid, Ireland, Berlin, Poland and Japan.

In 2017, Yarli co-curated a group digital installation pop-up MEMEMEME in The Crypt Gallery at central London with 42 emerging artists across the world. Her directed film Elephant the Allison was screened in queer shorts, PFFB, Berlin film festival (2018).

Yarli’s work was reviewed by Deborah Levy in Ivan Juritz Prize (2017), and featured in Vice and Aesthetica Magazine. In 2018, she was a guest speaker of Academic of Visual Arts, HKBU and The Arts Show, BBC Radio Ulster.

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