Scene of Events at Herzlyia Museum

Scene of Events at Herzlyia Museum

The current group of exhibitions at the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art features nine solo exhibitions of artists who combine photography and sculptural installation in various ways, to deliver such examples of the scene of events to our consciousness – not as a current news report, but as thoughtful representations, whose real impact is the product of the artists’ extended observation, prolonged stay, and actions at the site in question.

Oded Balilty: Front – Curator: Aya Lurie

After years of intensive work as a press photographer in the service of Associated Press (AP), which documents arenas of uprising, armed struggles, demonstrations and conflicts on a daily basis – for which he also won the Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography in 2007 – Oded Balilty (b. 1979) found himself in the grip of a vague emotional block that prevented him from returning to these places.

Balilty returns to specific places where he had previously covered news events as a press photographer and suspends at the site itself a white backdrop of the type used in photography studios, thereby isolating the element photographed from its surroundings. Balilty invokes the specter of memory by manifesting a defense mechanism that works by detachment and erasure.

Nurit Yarden: Homeland – Curator: Aya Lurie

Nurit Yarden’s Homeland body of work traces her wandering through the Israeli public sphere. At the heart of these works is a prolonged observation of a particular place or object that stands for a charged event or social or political phenomenon, presented as an allegorical moral tale. Incendiary issues are treated by the photographer with an intimacy that enables a direct gaze and promotes awareness.

Eldad Rafaeli: On the Scene – Curator: Aya Lurie

Eldad Rafaeli, one of Israel’s leading press photographers, has returned to scenes of events that he has been documenting for more than two decades in the Occupied Territories, Gaza, and the Israeli communities surrounding the Gaza Strip. These are images of devastated landscapes, abandoned and scorched. Rafaeli returns to the scene of events as though it were a battlefield, from which he must collect anyone that was left behind – following the trail of signs etched in the ground, evidence of a tragic story that repeats itself again and again, in an endless and predetermined cycle.

Hadar Saifan: Motel – Curator: Aya Lurie

In this, her first solo museum exhibition, Hadar Saifan presents an installation comprising a surface made up of inflatable air mattresses, covered with silver-backed thermal blankets, and images modeled on actual maps used for evacuating civilians to bomb shelters in times of emergency. These serve her to highlight the absurdity of what is perceived to be normal routine in Israel, where the reality of life under perennial threat is accepted as a matter of course.

 

Micha Ullman: Semi-Detached  – Curator: Aya Lurie

Micha Ullman, one of Israel’s greatest artists and an Israel Prize laureate, has created an original, exciting project, especially for the Herzliya Museum. At the heart of the installation lies an architectural drawing of the ground floor of the artist’s house – a functional two-family semi-detached house – traced with shallow berms of red Hamra soil. The house, a vulnerable organic unit whose relationship to its neighbor is governed by the connected vessels law, becomes allegorical both to the human body and to the political narrative of the land where we live. Consequently, the work points to the need to maintain good neighborly relations. Visitors are invited to enter the house and spend time in it, determining their own route as they walk in and around the rooms.

Sharon Poliakine: Route 531 – Curator: Aya Lurie

On the museum’s concrete wall Sharon Poliakine presents treated rebar iron which she collected from the building site of the paving of Route 531 – one of the largest ever in the Greater Tel Aviv region, which wrought a dramatic and sudden change upon the Sharon region landscape. Poliakine monitored the transformation and documented it in hundreds of photographs and dozens of sketches. These rebar works render present a process – manifested in the signs of life left behind by the construction workers in the field, as well as by the artist’s actions in the studio before they froze and turned into objects.

Haimi Fenichel: Mound  – Curator: Aya Lurie

Fenichel produces a space that resembles a building site, with an overwhelming sense of impending ruin. He plays with materials, swapping them around to create new combinations of image and substance, to produce hybrids that are at once familiar and alien. His works at the exhibition draw on two types of site, each steeped in Zionist-Israeli symbolism: a construction site and an archeological dig, linking the distant past with the present and future. Fenichel – and the viewers with him – are fated to gaze upon Israeli reality well after the pathos of its values of labor and heroism had evaporated and grown weary, and all that remains is a vision made up of fragments of quotations, remnants, and tributes to a culture that had sunk into the dust.

Inward Gaze – Avraham Hay: New Wing, 1997–1999 – Curator: Aya Lurie

This exhibition is part of the “Inward Gaze” series of shows, aimed at an exploration of the Herzliya Museum itself, its heritage and unique architecture. The photographs show the process of construction of the museum’s new wing in 1998–1999. Throughout the museum’s renovation and expansion, Hay would show up on a regular basis, set up his tripod, and take pictures from precisely the same viewpoints. This documentation offers a time capsule that combines the appearance of a construction site with the image of ruins. In the process, it points to the museum’s symbolic site, which is aimed at the commemoration, as a recurring cycle of destruction and creation.

Gaston Zvi Ickowicz: Whirlwind – Curator: Gilad Reich

The “Whirlwind” project by Gaston Zvi Ickowicz, comprised of photography and video works, was created in a series of visits by the artist to the northern part of the “Gaza Envelope” area over the past few months. The works on view document lands that had been set on fire by “burning kites” near the kibbutzim Or Haner and Gvar’am, and the ruins of the Palestinian villages of Simsim, Najd and Al-Mansurah on these lands. Ickowicz’s unique photography, informed by a combination of emotional ambivalence and critical distance, presents the land as an archeological mound and renders present the invisible forces at work in the local arena.

 

Hockney meets Van Gogh

Hockney meets Van Gogh

The major exhibition ‘Hockney – Van Gogh: The Joy of Nature’ demonstrates the unmistakable influence that Vincent van Gogh had on the work of David Hockney (1937). On view from 1 March to 26 May 2019.

Visitors learn about both artists’ fascination with nature, their use of bright colours and their experimentation with perspective. Hockney’s monumental Yorkshire landscapes play a central role.

The exhibition Hockney – Van Gogh: The Joy of Nature features some 120 works, including highlights such as the imposing The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate, East Yorkshire (2011) from the Centre Pompidou collection, Hockney’s intimate sketchbooks and his iPad drawings. Photographer Rineke Dijkstra created a portrait of the artist, who is now 81 years old, especially for this exhibition.

Axel Rüger (Director of the Van Gogh Museum): ‘Hockney is one of the most inspirational artists of our time. This is the first ever exhibition to explore how Van Gogh influenced his work. It is an absolute honour to have the opportunity to organise an exhibition such as this’.

About Hockney

From the late 1990s onwards, Hockney started to return from Los Angeles to his native region: the Yorkshire Wolds in Great Britain, where he painted the characteristic countryside. These paintings, the so-called Yorkshire landscapes, reveal thorough observations of the changing four seasons, and how light, space and nature are constantly in flux.

David Hockney – “More Felled Trees on Woldgate” 2008 – Oil on 2 canvases (60 x 48″ each)
60 x 96″ overall – © David Hockney – Photo Credit: Richard Schmidt

Love of nature

These often imposing landscapes offer a vivid insight into Hockney’s love of nature, and show a clear link with Van Gogh’s landscapes, such as The Harvest (1888), Field with Irises near Arles (1888) and The Garden of Saint Paul’s Hospital (‘Leaf-Fall’) (1889). The stylised vertical lines of the tree trunks in the latter work by Van Gogh are analogous to the repetitive lines in Hockney’s The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate, East Yorkshire (2011).

Rüger: ‘Out of pop art, Hockney evolved into a painter of colourful landscapes, in which the influence of Van Gogh is evident. Hockey is an artist who always successfully captures the reality of nature and the people around him, as was Van Gogh. Both artists show how nature appears to them’.

Loans

It was in the Yorkshire period that Hockney began experimenting with his iPad, using the device to create scintillating landscapes. Twenty of these iPad drawings will be displayed in the large format in the exhibition, which also focuses on Hockney’s sketchbooks: individual pages will be on display, which bears an unmistakable resemblance to Van Gogh’s drawing style. The exhibition also features videos, watercolors, black-and-white drawings, and prints. Photographer Rineke Dijkstra created a portrait of Hockney, especially for this exhibition.

David Hockney – “Woldgate Vista, 27 July 2005″ – Oil on canvas – 24 x 36”
© David Hockney Photo Credit: Richard Schmidt

Van Gogh inspiration

Hockney on Van Gogh: ‘His paintings are full of movement. What people love about Van Gogh’s paintings is that all the brush marks are visible and you can see how they are painted. When you’re drawing one blade of grass you’re looking and then you see more. And then you see the other blades of grass and you’re always seeing more. Well, that’s exciting to me and it was exciting to Van Gogh. I mean, he saw very clearly’.

‘The world is colourful. It is beautiful, I think. Nature is great. Van Gogh worshipped nature. (…) He might have been miserable, but that doesn’t show in his work. There are always things that will try to pull you down. But we should be joyful in looking at the world’. – David Hockney

The Van Gogh Museum, Museumplein 6, Amsterdam – March 1–May 26

1968 – Sparta Dreaming Athens at Château de Montsoreau-Museum Contemporary Art

1968 – Sparta Dreaming Athens at Château de Montsoreau-Museum Contemporary Art

The late 60’s marked the rupture of painting, where artists started turning to alternative forms of expression as a reaction against the changes and tensions brought about by contemporary society, that which the exhibition ‘1968. SPARTA DREAMING ATHENS’ is a reflection of.

It is dedicated to the 50th anniversary “1968”of a monumental moment in art history which all these changes took place, and poses the question as to whether this rebellion against the established model gave rise to a new contemporary language. The exhibition takes one on a visual journey through major figures of Minimal Art, Pop Art and Conceptual Art, featuring the talent of Art & Language, Victor Burgin, Toni Smith, Dan Graham, Maria Marshall, Claes Oldenburg, Les Levine, Edward Ruscha, and Bernar Venet.

Edward Rusha

Edward Ruscha, Every building on the sunset strip

‘1968. SPARTA DREAMING ATHENS’ is an echo of the two mythical cities of Ancient Greece Sparta and Athens, offering a transversal reading of this period. Tackling two forces, two ideologies and two visions of society where the future clashes to give place to a new (dis) order, bringing hope, creative energy, and change. It presents works of art that have helped change the history of art draw a path between memory, reverie, and utopia, generating a movement dedicated to new forms of articulation.

Art & Language Collection

Housing the largest collection worldwide of the radical conceptualists Art & Language, Château de Montsoreau-Museum of Contemporary Art was founded in 2016 by Philippe Méaille, after having loaned his collection between 2010 – 2017 to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona (MACBA). The pioneering movement envisions a separation between the art object and the artwork, and the name was adopted in parallel with the creation of the magazine Art-Language created in 1968, which has profoundly influenced contemporary art. 20 years after its creation in 1986 the movement was nominated for the prestigious Turner Prize.

Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and stretching for more than 2,000 m², the private museum remains a forward-thinking institution located in the Loire Valley with a cultural program that is organized around temporary exhibitions, events, meetings, concerts, and performances, breathing artistic life into the surroundings. Innovative, experimental and unexpected, these events and space as a whole mirror the creative wealth of today’s artists.

Dan Graham

Dan Graham, Rock My Religion

Art & Language includes artists such as Michael Baldwin, Mel Ramsden, Charles Harrison, Joseph Kosuth, Terry Atkinson, Harold Hurrell, David Bainbridge, Andrew Menard, Michael Corris, Ian Burn, Philip Pilkington, Kathryn Bigelow, David Rushton, Mayo Thompson, Sarah Charlesworth, Christine Koslov, Paula Ramsden, Preston Heller, Lynn Lemaster, Howard Graham, Sandra Harrison, Nigel Powell, Terry Smith, Nigel Lendon.

History of Château de Montsoreau

Holding the title as the only château in the Loire Valley built in the riverbed itself, Château de Montsoreau holds a lengthy history dating back to 1450 where it was originally commissioned by Jean II de Chambes, a close advisor to King Charles VII. The architecture of the Château de Montsoreau acted as a pioneer of the renaissance in France, being the first example of sailing architecture located in the heart of the Loire Valley, inspiring artists from Rodin to Turner and writers from Flaubert to Alexandre Dumas. Many famous figures have left their mark on its histories, such as Mary, Queen of Scots, Anne of Brittany, Claude of France, Henry IV of France and Francis I.

 

Manofim Festival Celebrates 10th Edition in Jerusalem

Manofim Festival Celebrates 10th Edition in Jerusalem

Launching the exhibition season in Jerusalem, Manofim Festival kicks off on October 23rd and runs for a period of 5 days until the 27th. This independent initiative run by Rinat Edelstein and Lee He Shulov is currently celebrating its 10th year, and will be showcasing a multiple array of events including exhibitions, performances, music events, film screenings, tours, conferences, parties, and workshops to name a few. Each evening the festival will move to a different part of Jerusalem, bringing art to unconventional places, ultimately reaching a broad audience boasting an all inclusive attitude by being open to the public and free of charge. Free shuttle buses transport visitors between locations during the vernissage. Celebrating the capital’s thriving culture, the festival acts as the flagship event of Jerusalem’s contemporary art scene.

 

 The Floating Life (2017), Ran Slavin at Manofim Festival in Jerusalem

The Floating Life (2017), Ran Slavin

 

By encouraging new creations, the festival generates a discourse and dialogue between artists and facilitates the accessibility of culture and art to residents and visitors, connecting the Eastern and Western sides of the city through art. The aim being to expose the contemporary art scene in Jerusalem to diverse crowds, as well as strengthen and empower Jerusalem’s artists. The festival is made possible with the support of Beracha Foundation, the Ministry of Culture and Sport, Jerusalem Municipality, Jerusalem Foundation, Mifal HaPais Council for Culture and Arts, Eden, and Manofim Friends Association. The project partners include all the contemporary art venues in Jerusalem, independent artist groups, culture institutions and artists from various disciplines.

 

‘Properties’: Exploring the Cultural Significance of Talbiya Neighbourhood

The main exhibition of the 2018 Manofim Festival entitled ‘Properties’ will take place in Talbiya neighborhood, located in the heart of Jerusalem on the edge of the city center. A green and leafy suburb, it also consists of many layers that store diverse historical narratives. It was established in the 19th century by wealthy Palestinian Arab Christians, reaching it’s architectural peak in the 1920’s. To this day Arab villas still stand, acting as a mark of historical significance. After the war in 1948, Palestinian residents that occupied the neighbourhood forcefully fled, and in due course, was populated mostly by Israeli Jews. Today its residents consist of mainly professionals, academics, diplomats, and government officials. It is also home to an unusual assortment of institutions that coexist in the same space including the President’s Residence, Prime Minister’s Residence, as well as various research and cultural institutions.

Newer Jerusalem and suburbs Talbieh, a Christian Arab community. Unknown Photographer, approx 1920-1933 at Manofim Festival in Jerusalem

Newer Jerusalem and suburbs Talbieh, a Christian Arab community. Unknown Photographer, approx 1920-1933 © American Colony collection

The exhibition aims to spotlight this diversity of the neighbourhood, held in various spaces – both public and private – creating a dialogue surrounding the contradictions that are present. Through various art actions, the exhibition will introduce critical questions that call for a reexamination of this exceptional, multi-faceted space whose residents may have come to see it as mundane and banal.

 

Manofim : Homage to Anna Ticho

Lifescape: The Work of Anna Ticho (b.1894 – 1980) presented at Ticho House, focuses on the depth and breadth of the artists work covering 70 years of her artistic endeavour. It showcases the range and richness of her oeuvre including early watercolour works from her days as a young girl in Vienna to her final works. The exhibition is complemented by the debut of Dorian Gottlieb’s new video, which acts as a homage as well as contemporary response to Ticho’s drawings of the historically significant Jerusalem hills. Anna Ticho: Rhythms in Landscape, another exhibition presented by The Jerusalem Print Workshop in collaboration with the Israeli Museum, highlights the artists landscape etchings, some of which were created at the workshop in the 70’s.

Judean Hills (1972), Charcoal on paper 100x70 cm, Anna Ticho at Manofim Festival in Jerusalem

Judean Hills (1972), Charcoal on paper 100x70 cm, Anna Ticho © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem

 

Themes of Displacement and Global Warming

Maries Gallery presents Plastik Arts, focussing on the dilemma surrounding the threatening impact of plastic on our environment, and the ghostly presence and ultimate worsening of global warming through over consumption. It explores the vast range of polymeric materials and products that are used in everyday life, and for the rest of our lives, exploring the impending fate of Earth. The exhibition offers an artistic and philosophical meditation on the gap between the “magic of synthetic ease” and the weight of its price. The group exhibition features the likes of artists Riva Pinski Awadish, Yoel Gilon, Alon Even Paz, Smadar Tsook and Hadar Amit amongst others.

‘Homes’ by Niv Rozenberg, an exhibition presented by The Photographic Communications Department at Hadassah Academic College, explores the body of work created by the artist between 2000 and 2018 – where he was inspired by changes in the urban landscape in which he was surrounded – namely New York and Tel Aviv. Taking a closer look by examining this familiar yet unknown environment with a conflicted gaze, his manipulated images create an aesthetic that shifts between photography, architecture, and graphic design with an emphasis on colour, shape, space, and time. It also underscores themes of displacement that are so prevalent in our current society regarding the conflict of war leading to the separation of people from their families, as well as their homeland.

 

Rina Nikova in a Contemporary Context

Rina Nikova (b.1897 – 1973), a pioneer of classical and biblical ballet in Palestine, will be celebrated at Hacubia gallery. She founded the Yemenite Dance Ensemble, engaged in ethnic and biblical choreography, and explored the link between dance and the land. A solo performance by dancer Shira Eviatar in collaboration with Eviatar Said, will be held at the exhibition. This visual story delineates a personal Yemenite cultural landscape: movements, dances, rhythms, gestures, values, and patterns of thought and communication that altogether compose a language practiced inside the home. When this language entered the public space, it was identified and labeled as “other.” On stage, Said, an immigrant in his own home, unravels and re-links physical memories of the past, bodies of knowledge, sensations and emotions, as he celebrates his existence as an independent body in the present.

Rina Nikova, prima ballerina, in Swan Lake,The Palestine Opera,1925-1928, Photographer Zvi Oron at Manofim Festival in Jerusalem

Rina Nikova, prima ballerina, in Swan Lake,The Palestine Opera,1925-1928, Photographer Zvi Oron © Courtesy of the Zionist Archives, Jerusalem

 

Mega Retrospective of Basquiat at Louis Vuitton Foundation

Mega Retrospective of Basquiat at Louis Vuitton Foundation

One of the most significant painters of the 20th Century, Jean Michel Basquiat , will be the star of a blockbuster show at the Louis Vuitton Foundation, having been 3 years in the making. The exhibition spans the artists’ entire career, which was relatively short from 1980 – 1988, with a focus on 120 artworks loaned from numerous collections worldwide.

The rebellious Basquiat started out on the streets of New York in the 70’s, tagging the city under the name SAMO (SAMe Old Shit), alongside his friend Al Diaz. He rose rapidly from street artist to sought-after painter at the height of New York being the fastest growing art scene in the 1970’s and 80’s. Throughout his life, he created around 1000 paintings, 2000 drawings, and 150 works alongside Andy Warhol. 

 

Behind the Drawing Board: Highlights of the Exhibition

Bernard Arnault, chairman and CEO of LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy) and mastermind behind the Louis Vuitton Foundation which opened in 2014, has been plotting this blockbuster exhibition since it’s opening. He also happens to be an avid collector of Basquiat, having in his possession over a dozen of his artworks, some of which are presented at the museum (although it is unspecified as to which ones). Arnault started purchasing Basquiat in the 70’s when he lived in New York and they were only selling for around US$5000, his very first purchase was a work that was done on wood which still hangs in his home. 

The show in Paris highlights his enduring appeal and includes artworks that have never landed on European soil, several collaborations between Basquiat and Warhol, as well as the Heads from 1981-82 that will be gathered together in the same room for the very first time at the Foundation (representing the artist at the peak of his artistic power). It is spread over nearly 2500m2 and is organized chronologically, but also by groups of works which define themes and invite comparisons. For Dieter Buchhart, curator of the show, “The exhibition follows his work, from the first drawings and monumental works to the later prints, collages, and assemblages, shedding light on his inimitable touch, use of words, phrases and enumerations, and his recourse to concrete hip hop poetry. To the image of the African American man threatened by racism, exclusion, oppression and capitalism, he opposed warriors and heroes.

 

An artwork of Basquiat from private collection on show at Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris

Untitled, 1982. Acrylic and oil stick on panel. 182.8 × 244 cm. Private collection © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York.

The Rise and Rise of Basquiat 

Consistent hype surrounding the artist that has been gradually rising over the past couple of decades was cemented with a monumental moment last year when his artwork Untitled (1982) was sold at Sotheby’s to billionaire Japanese collector Yusaku Maezawa for US$110.5 million, representing the height of his market strength. The painting contains his signature crowned heads against a vibrant blue background and holds the title as a record price for an American artist at auction (previously held by Andy Warhol at US$105 million). This particular sale smashed his previous auction record of US$57.3 million for Devils Head, also purchased by Maezawa, in May 2016. Untitled (1982) had not appeared on the market since 1984 when it was sold to Jerry and Emily Spiegel for US$19,000. Sotheby’s is also taking advantage of the hype and announced days before the opening that a private European collector has consigned 4 artworks that will go under the hammer at their contemporary evening sale in November.

 

The most expensive artwork of Basquiat sold to japanese collector Maezawa for $ 110.5 million at Sotheby’s in 2017 on show at Louis Vuitton Foundation

Untitled, 1982. Acrylic, spray paint, and oil stick on canvas. 183.2 × 173 cm. Yusaku Maezawa Collection, Chiba, Japan © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York. Picture: Courtesy of Sotheby’s, Inc. © 2018

Basquiat’s work refers to the eruption of Modernity, and he had an instinctive sense for the world that we are currently living in. His artworks are filled with references to his personal heritage, and he was influenced by artists past and present as well as New York’s downtown scene. The fact that Basquiat died 30 years ago and continues to have such a tremendous amount of impact on a generation that wasn’t even alive then, is quite remarkable. 

An artwork of Basquiat from the collection of Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris

Grillo, 1984. Acrylic, oil, paper collage, oil stick, and nails on wood. 243.8 × 537.2 × 47 cm. Fondation Louis Vuitton © Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat. Licensed by Artestar, New York. Picture: © Fondation Louis Vuitton / Marc Domage

 

 

Lee Lee Nam at Cernuschi Museum in Paris During FIAC

Lee Lee Nam at Cernuschi Museum in Paris During FIAC

South Korean artist Lee Lee Nam is perhaps one of the most notable video artists of our time and will be exhibiting at the Cernuschi Museum in Paris during globally renowned FIAC, as well as satellite art fair Asia Now. The Lee Lee Nam Museum will be opening in Gwangju early 2019, an exciting endeavor. His artwork A Path to Peace (2018) acted as the visual backdrop at the inter-Korean summit in April 2018, where Kim Jong-un crossed over to the South Korean territory to meet Moon Jae-in – a first for a North Korean leader since the beginning of the Korean War in 1950. A significant moment between the two historical enemies, and for the artist himself.

Reappropriation of Classical Art

Lee Lee Nam has exhibited alongside video art heavyweights such as Nam June Paik (whom he has been likened to and influenced by) and Bill Viola, ultimately aiding his international recognition. Central to his oeuvre, he places new technologies at the heart of his artistic approach whilst synthesizing significant art historical images using multiple new media techniques – breathing life into these classical artworks. He engages with traditional Korean art, animation, European old masters as well as digital art, going back and forth between East and West, past and present, dreams and reality, thereby probing the differences between cultures. A strong poetic charge emanates from his creations creating a cross-cultural dialogue replete with references to art history and technology. By using video as his medium, he is critiquing the society in which we live by responding to today’s generation of hyperconnectivity.

By blurring traditional contours of art, Lee Lee Nam allows new apprehension of his artworks, transporting the viewer from 2D to an interactive and animated sphere of video in 3D. Elements move slowly and silently, engaging the viewer with a hypnotic invitation to travel to another world that is imagined through his acutely technical digital manipulation of images.

Lee Lee Nam at the Cernuschi Museum

The 2nd edition of Cernuschi Video Art ‘Survivances’ at the Cernuschi Museum runs from 16th – 21st October and is dedicated to the theme of history and it’s ghostly presence, as well as the trauma that it presents to contemporary Asian societies. It explores a reflection of the memory of wars that once tore apart and disconnected societies and creates dialogue in terms of how new generations are confronted with this past. When one travels to an undesirable place, nostalgia sets in, and the artists selected for this year’s edition reappropriate their heritage by using digital manipulation, introducing the stylistic and technical diversity of video art in the Far East.

Lee Lee Nam at Cernuschi Museum in Paris During FIAC

New General view of Mount Geumgang – 2009 – Video duration: 7:14 min

‘New General view of Mount Geumgang’ (2009), the reappropriated artwork that will be on display at the Cernuschi Museum, begins originally as the famous landscape painted by Korean artist Jeong Seon in 1734 during the reign of King Yeongjo. Against a backdrop of tranquil sounds of nature, we are transported to a world steeped in historical references, beginning with a way of life that is seemingly peaceful. As the image slowly starts to take on a life of its own, the music gradually becomes more ominous. One hears a world that has been imprinted with the hand of industrialization, visually moving towards scenes of anarchy. The landscape transforms to one filled with city lights and skyscrapers, with a sinister tone of war plans and helicopters hovering, underscoring a time of mass destruction. Clouds of smoke gradually fill the air, indicative of explosives and suggestive of war.

This visual storytelling technique that is employed takes us on a journey through the history of Korea, the pinnacle being that of the Korean War that was a by-product of the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States. The war began in 1950, and the conflict ultimately resulted in Korea being split into two sovereign states. It was also the first time in history where jet fighters confronted each other in air-to-air combat, which is also reflected in the artwork. 1953 marked the end of the war when an armistice was signed, leading to a separation of North and South Korea. No peace treaty was signed, and the two Korea’s are technically still at war and engaged in a frozen conflict.

Lee Lee Nam depicts this trauma of war that is still very much prevalent in today’s society with the political tensions and dislocations that it stirs. He communicates with a contemporary audience whilst immersing them in a historical experience, underscoring the disturbance that presents itself alongside war.