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Joe Yorty

Altered Book:


Bringing Up Boys, Dr. James Dobson (2001)

Expired Plastidip, faux candle innards, D cell batteries, artist’s military record, high pressure laminate, and acrylic paint.

Artist Statement

In 2001, the year after I came out of the closet, James Dobson published his book Bringing Up Boys. While my family hadn’t read this book during my childhood, the “love the sinner, hate the sin” message it deploys was very much a part of my upbringing. Focus on the Family, the organization founded by James Dobson to promote anti-LGBT fundamentalist Christian values as they pertain to the rearing of children, is described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as one of a "dozen major groups [which] help drive the religious right's anti-gay crusade.”

I haven’t read Bringing Up Boys and I likely never will.

In 2006, I was honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy after eleven years of service.

Short Bio

Joe Yorty is an interdisciplinary artist who employs a range of materials, objects, and methods to make work that largely addresses the anxieties and absurdities of American domestic culture and the pathos of the ceaseless search for fulfillment in the accumulation of things that, to a large extent, defines the American experience in the twenty-first century.


Joe was born in southwest Utah, raised in Southern California, served eleven years in the U.S. Navy, and received an MFA in Visual Art at UCSD in 2013. He currently lives and works in San Diego where he serves as the founding Creative Director for the not-for-profit gallery and project space BEST PRACTICE.

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