Not your bedroom posters

The Home International Poster Project in Holon promotes dialog through design.

poster 88 (photo credit:)
poster 88
(photo credit: )
Not long ago, Holon was known as "that town near Tel Aviv, where, I think they have a beach." It turns out that they do not have a beach. But, the city is gradually positioning itself as a cultural alternative to the bustling metropolis of Tel Aviv. Part of this revolution is the Mediatheque, a 7600-square meter building where both the Holon library and theater are housed. It is not the most likely of places to find an exhibition such as "The Home International Poster Project," currently on display in the open space between the library and coffee shop, also housed in the uniquely designed building. The exhibition results from the cooperative effort between Israeli students from the department of Visual Communication Design at the Holon Institute of Technology and Turkish students from the Suleyman Demirel University in Isparta. "The project started with a group of design students from the Czech republic, where I was teaching design at the time, and with students from WIZO Haifa. It was transferred to Turkey by way of an exchange student of mine," says Yasha Rozov, the exhibit's curator and H.I.T. lecturer. "The concept of 'home' is universal and deeply rooted, regarding the concepts of both our national home and our physical home," Rozov says. Indeed, the posters span this range. One poster exemplifies the concept of the physical home, portraying an atypical door sign. Rather than the typical version found on most Israeli doors, on which are written the names of the residents happily living within alongside a cutesy drawing, this sign depicts a bruised wife and angry husband. Another poster represents, Israel, the national home, in which a soldier, wearing red boots, a huge duffel bag on his back and rifle silhouetted at his side, walks home along the yellow brick road. Rozov explains that, "the exhibit promotes dialog through design. Working with the Turkish students there was a fruitful, tense-free dialogue." It is quite apparent that the posters designed by the Turkish students are much less cynical than those designed by the Israelis. It could even be said that their posters come off as more patriotic. This may be attributed to the desire to preserve Turkish culture through the positive depiction of national Turkish symbols and traditions. Rozov, however, does not think that this means the Israeli students are any less patriotic. "If the students call out for change, then this is just as patriotic as saying how great everything is," he says. As for his curating a somewhat controversial exhibit housed in a rather conventional venue, Rozov is quite pleased, "It's true that it is not a gallery. But the stream of people that comes through this space is quite large. So, the exhibition will be viewed by many more people. If it causes a response from people, then this is a positive thing. The library is also frequented by youth and, if nothing else, they can learn of composition, photography and design." The exhibition, which opened on April 16, runs through May 1 at the Holon Mediatheque located at 6 Golda Meir Street. For more information call (03) 502-1555 or visit mediatheque.org.il.