Dr. Hadara Sheflan -Katsav
Three urinals, identical in size and shape, made of shiny stainless steel. From afar, the urinals look like weird tools, maybe a gynecologist’s instruments, but when approached the image changes. The center of the urinal looks like a carnivorous plant, or like an open mouth. A desire awakens to get closer, to stick one’s head in and look around, explore, and discover what’s going on inside.
In many of Yudkovik’s series, she examines the issue of male identity, especially through stereotypes that do not remain stagnant but rather squirm around .In Three Urinals, Yudkovik inserts a voyeuristic probe into the field of masculinity – a field in which the urinal signifies, above all, an intimate male territory offering companionship (brotherhood), as well as a display of masculine command (over the act of urination). However, contrary to Duchamp’s famous urinal and its many paraphrases, Yudkovik’s urinals seem from the side to be pregnant or full, as opposed to the empty space that is maintained when they are viewed from the front. In marked contrast to the original urinal, these are blocked and provoke no desire to urinate into them.
The unique nature of the three urinals may indicate the artist’s refusal to adhere to the notion of the vagina as a space that needs to be filled. The female space, which historically recognizes its very existence as lacking, appears here as a thing that does not require filling, that is not in need of completion. It is not a void but rather an independent and powerful space.