Yams in the Coat

by Skye Tao

← Back to Showcase bachelor of fine arts, photography major

Fourth Year | Graduation year: 2023

Skye Tao, Yams in the Coat, 2022, from the Soochowese (Distant Family) series, 2022- ongoing, archival inkjet print, 81.28 x 101.6cm. (Image courtesy Skye Tao)

Yams in the Coat
Screenshot 2023 03 29 at 12 01 28 PM

Skye Tao. (Image courtesy Skye Tao)

About the Artist

Skye Tao (b. 2000) is a contemporary visual artist based in Vancouver, BC. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree majoring in Photography at Emily Carr University of Art + Design.

Her practice mainly focuses on street, fashion editorial, and still-life photography. Her body of work consists of elements of nostalgia represented through saturated visuals. Tao is currently exploring aspects of uncanny and surrealism through photographic illustration by combining photographic composition and illustrative theories.

Tao participated in Capture x Emily Carr Exhibition (2022) Stranger Than Fiction group show and Centre A’s Tropical Cafe 2022 Holiday Art Market. Her work is also featured in PhotoED magazine's Spring/Summer 2022 digital edition. In 2023, she was one of the award winners for Booooooom Photo Awards.


For my ongoing series, The Soochowese (Distant Family), I photographed and collaged elements from memories of my family and my hometown, Suzhou, China. The piece Yams in the Coat encapsulates fond memories of my grandfather through a staged and surreal approach. This piece displays not only the physical distance between my grandfather and me but also portrays a memory from more than a decade ago.

The particular memory that inspired the work is my grandfather picking me up after winter cram school while keeping the baked yams warm in his coat. I always thought my grandfather’s coats could miraculously create food and snacks. His acts of care and love made me feel extremely secure and safe

Due to physical limitations, I was only able to capture elements that call back to my memories locally. I went to Vancouver Chinatown's Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden to take photos of Fen Qiang Dai Wa (the powdered walls and endless tiles), as the garden resembles architecture from my hometown Suzhou. Lastly, I traced the silhouette of my grandfather and me from a photo and turned it into a cast shadow on the wall to imply a sense of distance and care that extends through physical space and time.

Emily Carr Students are eligible to submit their work for consideration in the Showcase.

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