Jason Yates was born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1972, and currently lives and works in Los Angeles. He received his BFA from the University of Michigan in 1995 and MFA from the Art Center, Pasadena, California in 2000. Yates’s work focuses on a collaborative ethos and bridging the gap between various genres, namely art, music, fashion and design. The rich cultural history of Detroit is hugely influential in Yates work — while in his teens, Yates became a friend and collaborator with musician George Clinton. After moving to Los Angeles to study with Mike Kelley, Mayo Thompson and Liz Larner, Yates formed ‘Fast Friends Inc.’ a collaborative project to disseminate art outside the conventional gallery system and to distribute the work on the artist’s own terms. Chris Kraus writes in Where Art Belongs “Yates is an exceptional artist”. For six years as Fast Friends he created band posters for Ariel Pink, (Matt) Fishbeck (of the band Holy Shit) and others that are also original art works. The Fast Friends art works, which double as functional concert posters, are composed of works on paper and mixed media elements.
Yates has been widely exhibited nationally and internationally including, The 2015 Whitney Biennial – New York; Lille3000: Resistance, France; Circus Gallery – Hollywood, California; 2445 Caesar Chavez, Los Angeles, California; Urban Park Gallery, Detroit, Michigan; Geffen Contemporary and Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibits (LACE), Los Angeles, California. His work is included in private and public collections including the Whitney Museum and NYU.