SHIMON AVNI (photo credit: Oded Shatil)
(photo credit: Oded Shatil)

August 2023 art roundup: Hulda Forest sings and Shimon Avni honored



Visit Herzl Farm to take a nightly guided walk and enjoy audio sound works by curator Hillie Wurtman Moyal, actress Alit Kreiz, and composer Yifeat Ziv.

Titled “The Singing of the Woods,” patrons will be able to hear the sounds hidden in the forest earth, the beating hearts of trees, and human artworks in sound which cry out against the noise which seems to seep into our minds and lives.

Tours will be held on Thursday, August 24, and Tuesday, September 12. Note that the child-oriented tour is given once on each date, at 7:30 p.m., and is meant for children over the age of 10. 

The other two tours, at 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., are for adults only. 

NIS 35 per person. Each tour is roughly one hour long and is around 500 meters in length. See: for more 

 KHAN AL-AKHDAR #1 Digital Print (credit: RONEN ZIEN)
KHAN AL-AKHDAR #1 Digital Print (credit: RONEN ZIEN)

MUSA ERETZ ISRAEL MUSEUM invites patrons to visit after dark to enjoy live concerts by Shaman Shaman (Thursday, August 17) and Eden Derso (Thursday, August 24). Concerts begin at 8 p.m. Guyguy and Eyalo will close the month with a concert on Thursday, August 31. 

NIS 52 per ticket. Call (03) 6415244 to book. 2 Haim Levanon St., Ramat Aviv.

During your evening visit, don’t forget to visit What Is the Measure of Man? Shown as part of the Tel Aviv Biennale of Crafts and Design, this extensive exhibition connects textile, glass, paper, and more to show the current map of local material culture. Shown until Saturday, November 11.

ODED SHATIL invites art patrons to visit his private home in Tel Aviv (upon prearrangement) to enjoy seeing works by the last living member of the Ofakim Hadashim 1940s art group – Shimon Avni. Avni, who is over 90 years old, still paints.

“I fix forgetfulness,” Shatil told The Jerusalem Post, “we, as a culture, have a very short memory. An artist who does not present his works at least once every two years gets lost.”

Avni, who studied under the late Joseph Zaritsky, the father of Lyrical abstraction with his 1970s Tzuba series, worked in a style more akin to American abstract painting. 

“These,” Shatil explained, “are empty paintings, there is nothing for the eye to hang on to.”

Shatil lamented that the last time Avni was given space at the Tel Aviv Art Museum was in 1975. It should be noted Avni had been shown in various galleries, as well as museums since then – with the last exhibition held in 2021 at Artists’ House Tel Aviv.

Titled 24 Shapes for Emergency, that exhibition was curated by Ran Bartosh, who was appointed last month as the new Chief Curator of the Negev Museum of Art with his first exhibition planned for September.

For Shatil, this exhibition is a chance to redeem those artists whom museums have overlooked.

Museums, he explained, “live on art but look down at artists. They simply do not respond when you email or call them,” he added. He noted that they no longer support the long-term two-year research periods needed to curate ground-breaking exhibitions, like the 1991 Routes of Wandering curated by the late Sarit Shapira at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem.

Shown until Saturday, September 23. 8 Lieberman St. Shatil can be reached at 054-2815050. English language private tours are possible. Free admission. 


Visit Stargate, an exhibition of works by Eitan Ben - Moshe, shown at Arad Contemporary Art Center to enjoy a noon Hebrew gallery discussion with curator Leah Abir and live Rebab music. Free event. The exhibition will close the following day. 28 Ben Yair St. Level Two.


RONEN ZIEN won the Lauren and Mitchell Presser Award for Young Israeli Photographer 2023. His work will be presented at a solo exhibition to be held at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art in December 2024. The award includes a $5,000 cash prize.

Zien often employs digital means to question how reality is shaped and explained to the general audience. These include a video artwork where a donkey is covered with a green screen, the sort usually used to film actors when scenes are digitally planted in a different context, or little children holding an iron frame around a tree growing from the earth, as explored in another video art project. 

The judges lauded his ability to deal with serious, complex issues in a manner which is anything but didactic, and expressed their hope the award will help him continue his work in the same spirit.

AVI LUBIN was nominated Chief Curator of the Mishkan Museum of Art, Ein Harod. He will be replacing the outgoing curator, Yaniv Shapira. Lubin, who curated extensively at HaMidrasha Gallery (19 HaYarkon St. Tel Aviv) and other places, seems to favor highly daring artists who build a world around the viewer (Bangladesh by Tomer Dekel and A Place Under the Sun by Tamir Erlich and Noy Haimovitz to name two such exhibitions). This is in contrast to the erudite genealogies favored by Shapira (as could be seen in Lamenting the Canon, co-curated with Dr. Elad Yaron). 

“I have nothing against genealogies,” Lubin told The Post, “I also believe it is vital to deal with what is on the public’s mind.”

“I did not do all of my intellectual growth in the art world,” he added, “I have an MA in law and my thesis dealt with political trials. This means, in this context, how one person commits an act which sheds new light on the Israeli social order.”

He noted two such persons who faced the court. Tali Fahima, who exposed something about the relations between Israelis and Palestinians, and Margalit Har-Shefi, who exposed something about the relations between the state and Jewish law.

“When former US president Donald Trump banned Muslim migrants, including those who held valid visas, from entering the US in 2017,” Lubin remarked, “The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) responded immediately.”

It did so by showing works by Zaha Hadid, Ibrahim el-Salahi, Siah Armajani, and others with a label which read, “The new executive order prevents citizens from these artists’ countries of origin (Iraq, Sudan, Iran) from entering the country.”

Likewise, Lubin pointed to how, in Turkey, the current art scene is supported by private money and is able to push back against a conservative, authoritarian regime by showing queer and other daring artworks. 

He himself showed works by Turkish artists in Israel, among them, Nilbar Güreş.

The bank Garanti BBVA, for example, created SALT in 2011, a highly successful art and culture center in Istanbul.

One can only hope that an Israeli bank would follow the example on the Bosporus river, and do the same.

Art Roundup is a monthly glance at some of the art exhibitions and events currently being shown across the country. Artists, curators, and collectors are welcome to send pitches to with “Art Roundup” in the email subject.

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