Art Roundup: Thirsty Jerusalem goats, Tivon portraits and a Nigerian funeral

A preview of September exhibitions around the country:

 ‘The Burial of Patricia Nnadi,’ a new exhibition by Soviet-born painter Zoya Cherkassky. (photo credit: ZOYA CHERKASSKY)
‘The Burial of Patricia Nnadi,’ a new exhibition by Soviet-born painter Zoya Cherkassky.
(photo credit: ZOYA CHERKASSKY)

Jerusalem

In a delightful article titled “Partitures for Social Acoustics in Jerusalem,” printed as part of the Theory and Criticism series by the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, scholar Liora Belford noted how one of the first conceptual artworks created here, the 1970 Jerusalem River by Joshua Neustein and others, was eaten by goats.

The work consisted of tiny speakers placed along the valley facing Abu Tor that played the sound of running water. Thirsty goats mistook the sound for actual water and nibbled on the cables. Art scholar Gideon Ofrat suggested viewing the work in light of Neustein’s interest in the contrast between the actual arid landscape of the city and the imagined concept of a gushing river which flows through Kidron Valley.

Belford, working with the Mamuta Art and Research Center, created an impressive collection of Listening Walks in Jerusalem. To listen, go to soundcloud.com/listeningwalksinjerusalem.

Haifa

Attend a free 4 p.m. screening of West of the Jordan River by Amos Gitai on Saturday, October 8, at the Munio Gitai Weinraub Museum (135 HaNassi Blvd.) as part of The Architecture of the Occupation, a new exhibition of photographs by Ziv Koren that inspired Gitai’s film Laila in Haifa.

The first film is a visual journal of the various elements that enable Israeli control of the West Bank, and will be screened with English subtitles. The second will be screened nationwide starting Thursday, October 20.

 ‘Golden Howls,’ part of a 50-minute guided walk at Hayarkon Park. (credit: OFER VAKININ) ‘Golden Howls,’ part of a 50-minute guided walk at Hayarkon Park. (credit: OFER VAKININ)

The visually stunning two-and-a-half-hour film depicts various characters, Jews and Arabs, who live in Haifa and attempt to find solace.

Tel Aviv

Visit The Burial of Patricia Nnadi, a new exhibition by Soviet-born painter Zoya Cherkassky curated by Avi Lubin and now being shown at Hamidrasha Gallery (19 Hayarkon St.). Cherkassky created a series of 40 works based on three of her visits to Nigeria, one of which was to attend the funeral of her mother-in-law. 

The works refer to famous works in art history, such as the 1885 painting The Potato Eaters by Van Gogh, but also to The Biafran War. Cherkassky, who gained recognition thanks to ironic works such as her 2006 painting Rich People Are Friends (Rosenfeld Gallery, Tel Aviv) is able to offer a rich, sensitive exploration of the loaded relationships between what we think of as “West” and Nigeria. Shown through Friday, November 18 

Enjoy Golden Howls, a 50-minute guided walk at Hayarkon Park, created by Gal Nissim. This unusual blend of a walk in the park and an artistic experience fuses the jackal-headed god Anubis and augmented reality. Download the application to your phone and take a guided walk with your earphones on. At key moments, place the smartphone screen in front of you to explore the actual park with the digital visuals curated for you. 

Nissim has brought back here what she began doing in New York with the ongoing Synanthrope Preserve project, which focused on other animals such as raccoons (synpreserve.com). Note how this work is in step with Belford’s Listening Walks in Jerusalem or the second season of Seeing the Invisible now at the capital’s botanical gardens. These projects represent a large shift in the current art world to introduce the latest technological features. Visit artport.art/exhibition/goldenhowls to download the app and plan your trip. (Website is in English and Hebrew, no fee required.) 

Kibbutz Ashdot

Watch Darkness There and Nothing More by Bosnian director Tea Tupajic at the Beit Uri and Rami Nehostan Museum (curated by Leah Abir, shown until Saturday, December 24). Tupajic speaks with two Dutch soldiers, Frank and Harm, who served at the UN force stationed in war-torn Yugoslavia. While the film is an attempt to learn what took place during an undisclosed failure to protect the innocent, the Srebrenica massacre is never named. The film could be about any war. This is likely to be an emotionally harrowing experience. Screening times: Monday to Wednesday at 10:30 a.m., noon and 1:30 p.m.; Thursday at noon, 1:30 p.m., 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.; and Friday and Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and noon. Admission is free.

Art News 

Leading Japanese architects Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa from SANAA were commissioned to oversee a historical change in the capital’s landscape as the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design relocates from Mount Scopus back to the city center as this academic year starts. 

This tremendous shift will impact Jerusalem for years to come as students will seek to rent apartments near the academy, and their presence contributes to making the capital a vibrant city of culture.

The innovative design spells a return of the academy to the same-titled street, a few steps away from the student’s dorms located on Agron Street.

The design emphasizes transparent walls, which fill the space with natural light, and at the same time, reveal to residents what happens in the halls of the fabled art academy. The students will also refocus their gaze, from looking down onto the city from a high mountain, they will now observe city life on eye level.

Bezalel president Prof. Adi Stern noted the new campus will “enable us to continue bringing to life the vision of Bezalel, to shape the future of art, design and architecture education.”

Studio Visits by David Isaacs closed at Kiryat Tivon Gallery on Saturday, October 1. The impressive collection of ink on paper works allowed the visitor a comprehensive review of most major artists working in the field today. These include members of older generations such as sculptor Ya’acov Dorchin, known by residents of Tel Aviv for his 1990 Water Well and Four Dogs on King George Street, and painter Eli Shamir, depicted in the documentary A Lullaby to the Valley by Ben Shani. The new generation is represented by Addam Yekutieli, a street artist known as “Know Hope.” 

Art Roundup intends to offer readers a monthly glance at some of the finest art exhibitions currently being shown across the country. Artists, curators and collectors are welcome to send pitches to [email protected], with “Art Roundup” in the email subject. While all suggestions are welcome, sending information does not ensure the exhibition or collection will be featured.