Rotem Rozental

  • picks August 18, 2016

    Zik Group

    Zik Group’s recent installation poignantly remarks on the shaping and narrating of local topography. With an eighty-two-foot-high wooden construction that extends through several stories and with a pool of black water at its base, made almost unapproachable by the pool’s high walls, Minaret of Defense, 2016, highlights the proximity of the museum to the nearby army base Ha’Kirya, whose most recognizable attribute is the Marganit Tower: a tall, flickering center of secretive communications, overlooking the city. Minaret is inspired by the physical appearance of the army base’s structure and its

  • interviews November 21, 2014

    Sari Carel

    Sari Carel is a New York–based artist whose work utilizes a variety of media to explore a connection between extinct species and early audiovisual technologies. Her latest solo exhibition–featuring the multimedia installation Semaphore Island, which she discusses below–will be on view at the Haifa Museum of Art in Israel from November 8, 2014 through March 7, 2015.

    SEMAPHORE ISLAND is a mixed-media installation based on sound recordings of wild birds—such as the Guam flycatcher from Guam and the Kaua’i ‘O’o from Hawaii—that are extinct or nearly extinct. The series was recorded through a

  • picks August 22, 2014

    Luciana Kaplun

    The protagonists of Gilda, Luciana Kaplun’s latest film, are silent, anonymous faces of foreign workers whose legal status is questionable. The 2014 film homes in on Latin Americans who clean Israeli homes and businesses, among them cleaners of the CCA itself, following workers as they begin their daily chores. A young man dressed in white arrives at a luxurious house in Tel Aviv, another at a triplex, and a woman cleans offices in the Haaretz newspaper building. Amidst a monotonous rhythm of work, their activities suddenly transform: The first young man, folding washed clothes, calmly tries on

  • picks August 21, 2014

    Nevet Yitzhak

    For this exhibition, artist Nevet Yitzhak was invited to browse the collections of the Museum of Islamic Art. Yitzhak selected a number of objects, including some associated with liturgical practices and others with more everyday functions. Among them were a piece of cloth, a sword, and an illustrated manuscript. Photographic reproductions of these objects, originally used for the collection’s cataloguing system, have been reinterpreted into the video collages that are screened on the gallery walls, orchestrated to create a composition onto the space itself.

    In the collages, the original colored

  • picks July 29, 2014

    Nelly Agassi

    Nelly Agassi presents a series of ink-jet prints, identical in their dimensions and display. The arrangement of the abstracted geometric shapes in each composition echoes both blueprints for unidentified architectural surroundings and humanly configurations, namely, female reproductive organs.

    These ambiguous floor plans are driven by harmonious gestures that cannot be fully interpreted or materialized. The grid-like compositions repeat a constructive logic, as seen in Drawing No. 3 (all works cited, 2014) in which a circular shape functions as the center of an abstract structure, to which all

  • picks July 02, 2014

    Nadav Assor

    In Nadav Assor’s latest exhibition, a trapped hexacopter, hidden behind a black curtain and tied down to the floor, reacts to visitors entering its space by hovering and praying, perhaps crying for help. The drone chants Ezekiel 1 in Yemenite style and catches random broadcasts from the local popular army radio station, Galey Tzahal (Waves of the IDF), all becoming part of Ophan, 2014, the first installation in an Israeli gallery to consider civil uses of drones and the first to involve a drone practicing religious devotion.

    The inclusion of a central biblical chapter of Jewish mysticism, which

  • picks December 18, 2013

    Slater Bradley

    In his well-known filmic series “Doppelganger Trilogy,” 2001–2004, Slater Bradley exhumed fallen heroes of pop culture. Bradley’s latest exhibition in the United States debuts his newest videos, Sequoia and She Was My la Jetée, both works 2013, which continue to explore haunting cultural presences by conjuring up idealized female figures. Shown on three screens, these women blur the boundaries between memory, fiction, and obsession, drawing the viewer in while they remain distant and unattainable.

    In Sequoia, we see Vertigo’s Kim Novak showing Jimmy Stewart a giant sequoia tree, indicating this

  • picks November 11, 2013

    Jordan Eagles

    The term “red giant” refers to the approaching death of a celestial body. This cosmic evolutionary phase is the organizing principle behind Jordan Eagles’s latest exhibition, where the artist continues to investigate his medium of choice: blood collected from slaughterhouses. Eagles began experimenting with animal plasma as a student at New York University in 1998 in his search for a vibrant substitute for red paint. Unlike Phil Hansen, who created Kim Jong Il’s portrait using his own blood, or Marc Quinn, who bled for his self-portrait, Eagles strides away from self-sacrifice.

    Within the quiet

  • picks September 04, 2013

    “Showtime”

    As its title implies, “Showtime” suspends itself in a distinct moment: right before the performance begins. Not a moment of climax but one of heightened intensity, of preparation for what is yet to come. Curated by Hadass Maor, the exhibition gestures at that experience of agonizing silence that holds an equal potential for failure and success. Accordingly, three sound installations ask viewers to become active participants, thus blurring discrete borders and assumptions of spatial hierarchies.

    The exhibition features three female artists: Naama Tsabar, Alona Rodeh (both of whom created site-specific

  • picks February 07, 2013

    Pinchas Cohen Gan

    This retrospective focuses on the development of Pinchas Cohen Gan’s conceptual syntax and perception of the pictorial space over the time he spent in New York from the 1970s to the present. In an attempt to underscore the considerable breadth of his influence, guest curator Galia Bar Or has presented manifestos, private journals, and artist’s books. Of significant weight within this exhibition is the series “Standard Religious Art,” 2012, the artist’s most recent work. Here Cohen Gan gestures at his own exploration of Christian imagery (to which he devoted an exhibition in 1993) and his continued

  • picks January 30, 2013

    Oren Eliav

    “Call and Response” culminates artist Oren Eliav’s long-standing inquiry into the function of vision in painting and its relation to the rules of perspective. Although Eliav’s large-scale canvases in this exhibition seem preoccupied explicitly with Christian imagery and theology, his paintings also point to tensions of identity in the contemporary Western world and its historical narratives. Eliav’s paintings are based on photographs of ecclesiastical architecture, and each plays with the viewer’s spatial and conceptual viewpoint, presenting a different location within a church that Eliav

  • picks September 10, 2012

    Jan Tichy

    In March 2011 the last high-rise building of Cabrini-Green, a public housing development on Chicago’s Near North Side, was demolished and 134 deserted apartments turned into rubble. In its prime, the complex had housed over 15,000 people. Over the years, however, gang violence, neglect, and poor conditions drove residents away. Days before the demolition began, Jan Tichy installed 134 flickering LED boxes in the empty spaces of the final standing building; during the monthlong process, these boxes blinked every day from 7 PM to 1 AM with unique patterns. The lights could have been read as SOS

  • picks August 22, 2012

    Joshua Neustein

    נוישטיין: כלומר רישום,” the Hebrew title of Joshua Neustein’s latest exhibition, can be translated as “Neustein: Meaning Drawing,” which is a direct way to explain how his various installations or video works might be considered as drawings: how magnets that attract and attach pieces of metal to paper, for instance, or large plates of metal covering the gallery walls and floors, could be defined as such. Unlike the instructive Hebrew title, the English title of the exhibition, “Neustein: Drawing in the Margins,” seems to reflect on how Neustein persistently undermines strict definitions of the