A dolos is a concrete block that protects harbor walls from the rough touch of the ocean. It is an object that bears a subtle yet ominous presence. First seen in South Africa in the early 1960s, this type of heavy structure has made its way around the world, becoming an invaluable accessory to seaside locales.

Dolos is also the name of the newest and most promising festival on the Tel Aviv cultural horizon. This week, the Dolos Dance Festival will come to a triumphant close after three weeks of performances in the Jaffa Port.

The festival was born out of a need to provide new platforms for performance in the city. Based in an industrial hangar, Dolos invited participating artists to translate their works to fit the rough interior of the space. Many of the pieces had already been presented in other venues and were adjusted to maximize the viewer experience in the Dolos warehouse.

Tonight, Rotem Tashach will show Paved Life. The piece premiered earlier this year and has accrued a good amount of mileage since. Similar to Tashach’s previous works, which have been featured in the Curtain Up Festival and the Contact Point Festival in Jerusalem, Paved Life includes a hearty serving of both text and movement. Exploring the types of behavior deemed acceptable in the urban surroundings in which Tashach works, the piece is witty and personal.

Tomorrow night, Nava Frenkel’s Now and Never will engulf the seasplashed space. Frenkel’s creative process, which she shared with three other artists, spanned more than a year.

“It’s an experimental theater piece that isn’t based on a play,” explains Frenkel.

In this work, Frenkel investigated human behavior, particularly the desire not to desire.

“What I tried to do with this piece was to give focus to the need for mediocrity,” she says.

On Monday night, the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company will present Rami Be’er’s Kibbutzit 360.

Performed in the round, with audience members on all sides of the stage, Kibbutzit 360 is suitable for the entire family. As in all KCDC pieces, this work is full to the brim with energy. The cast of 12 dancers interacts with the viewers, making each spectator part of the performance.

On Tuesday evening, choreographer and filmmaker Daniel Landau will show Reside 1.1: Jesse Cohen. Landau created this work using a unique technology in which he projects images onto screens worn by the dancers. The footage was amassed over months of research in the Jesse Cohen neighborhood of Holon, during which Landau met with members of the community.

Landau, working with Jackie Shemesh, manages to provide a window into one of the poorest and most crime-ridden neighborhoods in the country. The testimonies recorded are deeply personal.

Sahar Azimi and Tamara Erde will give the final performance in this year’s program on Wednesday night. Their collaboration on Cell in a Human Scale rendered a multigenre piece that involves video and dance. Stage design helps to make the visual impact of this work unforgettable. Cell in a Human Scale was unveiled with a specific mission – to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS. The content of this performance hints at a virus among us. Whether that virus is our ignorance or an actual illness is left to the interpretation of the audience.

The Dolos Dance Festival is the brainchild of Moshe Shechter and the Zik Group, who performed earlier in the festival, and is supported by the Jaffa Port Administration. Though it is perhaps too soon to tell, Dolos appears to have earned its place on the annual dance calendar.

For tickets or more information, visit www.dolos.co.il.

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