Most women can recount a sad story of the day they left the beauty salon after a
haircut and cried for hours. Sometimes those hair-related tears fall for weeks.
In the worst cases, emergency stylists are called in to manage the damage. It
may seem excessive, but a woman and her hair share a strong connection, one that
goes straight to the heart.
“Hair is an integral part of any woman’s
identity,” says photographer Roy Schweiger. Taking a break from his role as a
staple in the fashion industry, Schweiger has devoted his talents to capturing
the whirlpool of feelings evoked by hair. Together with artist Hagai Shvadron,
he will unveil his first solo exhibition, “Strands of Emotion,” during Holon’s
Women’s Festival later this month.
Two men presenting work in a festival
dedicated to furthering female creativity may seem like an odd fit, but the
duo’s vision fits perfectly with the spirit of this event. Though neither of the
artists can speak to the daily trials and tribulations of women, their
exhibition is a visual representation of the conflict between reality and beauty
At first glance, Schweiger and Shvadron seem like an odd
couple. Schweiger hails from the glamorous, glittery galas of Milan’s fashion
world, while Shvadron spent the better part of his career in front of an
enormous screen as a graphic designer. However, a few scratches beneath the
surface reveal tundra of common ground. Both men were born in Israel but were
drawn to the aesthetics of Italy. The two can agree upon their mutual interest
in the female figure and, most importantly, each is a huge fan of the
“In our first meeting,” explains Shvadron, “Roy brought a
photography book. The minute I saw it, I knew we were on the same page. The
images were sort of mirror reflections. That became the basis of our
As a starting point, Schweiger photographed a roster of
models whose looks were embellished by over-thetop hair design.
selected the models, I wasn’t looking for beauty per se but for character and,
of course, for hair.
For each shoot, we spent hours getting the hair
styling just right, including pounds of extensions to exaggerate, accentuate and
evoke,” explains Schweiger.
Once he was satisfied with the results of
hours of photographing, he passed on his selections to Shvadron.
capture images as a photographer does. With this exhibition, I got each piece
and started to play around with the images,” says Shvadron, whose trademark
light etching technique has returned him to the arts after a 15-year hiatus.
Using a touch screen, he traces freely to create long arcs of light, which he
describes as “lines of energy.”
Over the past five years, Shvadron has
embarked upon a long-term project called Streams of Lights.
technology has been part of my life for years,” says Shvadron. “I like to
squeeze all the possibilities out of the technology at hand.”
project gave Shvadron an opportunity to hone his technique further. “I like to
understand the character of each woman from each portrait. I spend time with the
photo and begin to exaggerate the features or to draw out what’s underneath the
Once both artists completed their interpretation of the image,
the two pieces were brought together, creating a mirror image of photography and
The result is both aesthetic and thought-provoking.
juxtaposition of Hagai’s drawing changes the composition of the photo,” says
“This collaboration, I believe, creates a sort of triangle,”
says Shvadron. “There is the woman in the photo, her life, her features and her
expression. Then there is the representation of this woman in the photo, which
is influenced by the lighting and styling. Finally there is the drawing, which
brings out the truth of that woman, her ideals and desires. The three don’t
always match, but that’s what makes it interesting to behold.”
tension between a woman’s personality and her outside appearance was a major
issue in this work.
While Schweiger feels most comfortable in the fashion
world, he recognizes the harsh expectations placed on women as a result of tools
“Right now, the topic of enhancing photos is very
controversial. But there have been ways of doing that for years that didn’t
involve the computer. Showing the truth of what was in the studio on a
particular day takes work. In some ways, all photographs are subjective, even if
they are viewed as documentation,” says Schweiger.
“The dialogue here
isn’t about women against the representation of beauty but rather between a
woman and herself. I think women taking in this work will have to ask themselves
questions about their own feelings of inside versus outside and security versus
insecurity,” adds Shvadron.“Strands of Emotion” will open on February 23
at the Holon Theater and will remain on display for one month during the Women’s
Festival. For more information about the Women’s Festival, visit
www.holon.muni.il. For more on Roy Schweiger, visit www.royschweiger.com. For
more on Hagai Shvadron, visit www.streams-of-light.com.
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