All Will Come to Pass

Ori Gersht / All Will Come to Pass

Opening: 31/08/2013   Closing: 24/10/2013

All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
All Will Come to Pass, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Cell 3, Archival Ink Print, 120x180cm, 2012
Reflection, Archival Ink Print, 60x84 cm, 2012
Dressing, Archival Ink Print, Diptych, 17x25 cm, 2012
Love Me Love Me Not 2, Archival Ink Print, 120x120 cm, 2013
Liquid Assets
Emergence 1, Archival Ink Print, 50x192 cm, 2012

In All Will Come to Pass exhibition, Ori Gersht will premier in Israel a new body of work consisting of three collections of photographs titled: Offering, Love Me Love Me Not and Cells, as well as a HD film titled Liquid Assets.


In addition to the exhibition at Noga Gallery, Ori Gersht will hold a comprehensive solo exhibition at the CCA Tel Aviv. This exhibition will include three large scale film installations: Offering, Will you Dance For Me and First to Laugh.


The photographic series titled Offering was created during the artist’s visit to the Andalusia region of Spain in 2012. The photographs capture a matador’s meticulous spiritual and physical preparation, portray the bull’s holding pen, and finally bear witness to the encounter between man and animal.  As in previous works, Gersht considers private and collective histories. The photographs simultaneously inhabit spaces of volatility and harmonious elegance.


Spain established their modern bullfighting tradition in the early eighteenth century. A highly ritualized event, an impeccably adorned matador baits a bull with a cape, drawing the animal in and out and around the bullfighting ring. The event most often culminates in the bull being slain.


Bullfighting images are simultaneously seductive and repellent, vital and deadly. As primal as bullfights are, a sense of beauty is captured in its ritual, tradition, and in the continuation of its practice throughout Spain in the same way. However due to recent legislation, bullfighting is on the verge of disappearing and Gersht’s photographs therefore become a form of epitaph, a testimony to the temporal nature of tradition and cultural identity.


In this body of work Gersht continues his dialogue with the history of painting. Without taking a moral stand, the images converse with a long artistic tradition of religious iconography. Through contemporary and historical juxtapositions the photographs present a timeless space, a space that cannot be anchored, a space that hangs forever between past and present, between art history and contemporary practice.


Unlike the bullfighting images, the series Cells, 2012 depict the holding pens in which bulls are held before they are released into the ring.


The pens are considered formally and the three-dimensional aspects of these spaces are virtually erased, as the surface qualities are graphically emphasized. What becomes apparent about these holding areas are the bull’s reaction to them, as one can imagine the anxious animals ramming into the wood and mortar walls, scratching and cracking the surfaces and drawing blood as they seek to release themselves from the confined enclosure.


In relation to the photographs of Bullfighting, Gersht will present in the gallery new prints from the series Love Me Love Me Not, 2013. These photographs actively resist identification. They are highly abstract, appearing alternatively as miniature flowers or as mandalas, metaphysical or symbolic representations of the cosmos. Using a high definition camera, Gersht captures a drop of blood as it disperses through milk. Initially the blood appears as a black puncture hole, growing symmetrically and gradually outwards. It becomes a deep red as it pushes away from its inception, transforming into a pale pink before the two fluids coalesce into a single entity. The purity of the milk is at odds with the blood, an aggressive contaminant. The Love Me Love Me Not works refer to a religious or maternal heritage, to a start or a beginning that hovers beyond the image. Informed by these veiled histories, Gersht sees recollections of violence through a lens of quiet subtlety.


In the upper gallery, Gersht will present the HD Film Liquid Assets 2012, that was commissioned by the Museum of Fine Art in Boston for the exhibition History Repeating, a mid career survey exhibition that presented Gersht’s work at the museum earlier this year. In the film, what appears to be an ancient Greek coin from the museum collection gradually melts, slowly transmuting the portrait of Euthydemos II, king of Bactria. As if aging, he begins to crumble and disappear. This struggle between nature and culture, between the human hand that created the object and the natural mineral of which it is made, is fierce and continuous. Like the image of Christ on the Shroud of Turin, the face refuses to fade away. As the metal turns to liquid, ripples and waves form rhythmic patterns. Gersht associates this physical transition with the medieval efforts to alchemically transform base metals into noble ones, such as silver and gold. However, since coins have always been the most universal embodiment of currency, and have hardly changed for over two and a half thousand years, he also identifies this ancient coin with the beginning of our economic system, when cash was exchanged for commodities. Today we are at the end of this era, as coins become more obsolete and transactions almost entirely abstract.

Ori Gersht was born in Tel-Aviv, Israel in 1967. He received his BA from the University of Westminster, London (UK) and his MA in Photography from the Royal College of Art, London (UK). He lives and works in London.


He has previously been the subject of solo exhibitions the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The Imperial War Museum, London (UK), The Tate Britain, London (UK), The Tel Aviv Museum of Contemporary Art, Jerusalem (Israel), The Santa Barbara Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC, The Jewish Museum, New York, The Yale Centre for British Art, Connecticut, and the Gardner Arts Centre, Brighton (UK).


Gersht is included in the public collections of the British Council, London (UK), Deutsche Bank, Government Art Collection, London (UK), the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC, the Imperial War Museum, London (UK), The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem (Israel), The Jewish Museum, New York, the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, the Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, the Los Angeles County Museum, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, The Tate Britain, London (UK), the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Tel Aviv (Israel), the 21C Museum, Louisville, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London (UK).

Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection

Joshua Borkovsky / Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection

Opening: 21/06/2013   Closing: 02/08/2013

Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection, Exhןbition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Works from the Gaby and Ami Brown Collection, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Mixed Media, 111X83 cm, 2011
Pilgrimage, Mixed media and a gold leaf on fabric, 50x50cm,1985-1986
Untitled, oil and grafit on fabric, 142.5x142cm, 1985
Dream Stones, 40 cm
Untitled, Tempura and gold leaf on gesso on wood, 40x80, 2002

This exhibition of early works by the artist Joshua Borkovsky, all from the Gaby and Ami Brown collection, is a continuation or a “coda” to his comprehensive show that took place, last year, at the Israeli Museum in Jerusalem.


Ami Brown is considered as one of the leading and most important collectors in Israel. He was a business man and an initiator which comprehended and dealt with art-collecting in a total manner. The collection includes more than 3000 thousand works gathered in a period of five decades. Brown supported retrospective exhibitions, catalogues and artists books. His perception was insightful, he had a vast library of art trough which he studied and revised art subjects. He lived through art and was enclosed by it.


Borkovsky’s work predominantly features phantasmagoric imagery, such as the silhouettes of sailing ships, cartographic and geometric images. This preoccupation yielded crystal chandeliers reflected in mirrors as well as anamorphic photographs of gardens and recent cycles; Echo and Narcissus and Vera Icon.


The iconic characteristic of Borkovsky’s work calls to mind the voyage towards the deepest primordial craving of the sub-conscious. The miniaturization of the expanding and distancing movements on the pictorial surface makes viewing it like peering through a small window for traces of territories and objects which have already vanished from the range of vision.


The images disappear from their point of derivation in a way that divests them even more of their identity.


Borkovsky directs the viewer to a different mode of seeing which distinguishes itself as being ²different² from a direct visual perception of the world. It demands the viewer’s active presence and concentrated observation, leading him, paradoxically, to question seeing and to doubt the truth in what was reflected.


Borkovsky paints using traditional tempera technique, as traces of an ancient artistic tradition.


This gives his work an iconic quality, while designating it as a medium of memory an objectless and abstract sub-conscious realm.


Joshua Borkovsky was born in Israel, 1952. He studied at the Bezalel Academy of Art where he teaches as a senior professor. Since 1979 he showed in 15 solo exhibitions. His work was displayed in exhibitions, such as; 12 Biennale de Paris, Musee d’Art Modern de la Ville de Paris in 1982, Israel Museum, Jerusalem in 1987, 42 Venice Biennale, Italy in 1986, 12 Biennale of Sao-Paolo, Brazil in 1991 and In Between, Ein-Harod Museum of Art in 2005. Recent Group exhibitions include; Love at First Sight, The Vera, Silvia and Arturo Schwarz Collection of Israeli Art, The Tel Aviv Museum of Art in 2000, Culture and Continuity, The Jewish Museum, New-York in 2002.


Last year he had a solo exhibition; Veronese Green, Paintings 1987 – 2012, at the Israeli Museum Jerusalem. Since 1998 he showed 4 exhibitions at In Noga Gallery.


Joshua Borkovsky has received numerous prestigious awards, amongst them; the Janet and George Jaffin Prize for Excellence in the Visual Arts, America-Israel Cultural Foundation in 1998 and the Ministry of Education and Culture Prize in 2004, Dizengoff Prize for Painting 2013.



Jossef Krispel / Tigers

Opening: 25/04/2013   Closing: 14/06/2013

Tigers, Installation view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Tigers, Installation view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Tigers, Installation view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Tigers, Installation view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Tigers, Installation view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Untitled (Aladin Sane), oil on canvas, 60cm diameter, 2012
Untitled 2 (Picasso raising hands), filled, oil on canvas, 81x65cm, 2013
Untitlled (Diamond masks), Oil on Canvas, 145x175cm, 2013
Uuntitled (David), oil on canvas, 65x54 cm, 2013
Untitled 2 (David), oil on canvas, 65x81cm, 2013

Painting is a Made-Up Canvas


Hung on the wall of Jossef Krispel’s studio is a medium sized painting with the words: Make-Up in print, erased with an elegant brushstroke, and beneath it, as if a handwritten correction, the word: Made-Up. A cosmetic correction. Both phrases have the same meaning: manipulations made to conceal the truth and conceal the face: make-up, mask, fake (as well as: fictional, invented, fabricated). Against the walls lean paintings of David Bowie’s made up face, “the artist with a thousand faces”, who changed identities and musical styles at a breakneck pace. Fernando Pessoa, who in his writings hid behind seventy different persona’s (several of them had names and fictional biographies), said that masquerading means knowing yourself, and “What a great happiness not to be me”. In his song Quicksand (from the album Hunky Dori) Bowie sings: “Don’t believe in yourself, don’t deceive with belief”. What or who hides behind David Bowie’s thousand masks? A virtuoso musician and performer, who’s constant motion does not allow closing in with a label or finite definition, or rather a charming charlatan, empty and lacking in emotion, who juggles and deceives with his changing sexual identities?


The painting is a made-up canvas. Make-up is a mask made out of brilliant colors. On the table in the studio, near the easel lie many dozens of paint tubes, organized in lines: I count as many as twenty different greens. As well as reds, blues, flesh hues and yellows from the most highest quality and the most expensive brands: Old Holland, Gamblin, Williamsburg, and even Schminke, colors manufactured in Germany and not sold in Israel (incidentally the name in German means Make-up). The craft of the painter is that of a make-up artist, and vice-versa. The make-up artist is a painter whose canvas is the object of his observation. A thin layer of paint, flat and glittering, is laid upon the canvas with the same tools that serve the make-up artist (recently Krispel has begun painting with paintbrushes that were not meant for oil paint at all, gentle paintbrushes that bring to mind make-up brushes). The depth of the color is as deep as the make-up. If the painting is a made-up canvas/mask, then  what is the true face of the painting? The naked canvas? And how odd it is that the word Fabric is the base for the word Fabricate, meaning to invent and concoct.  And indeed, lies and fables are woven like fabrics. At its best – painting  is illusion. The face of the painting is that of a mask, which it chose to wear.


Of Dionysus, the Greek god of mask and theater, it is told that whoever saw the true face underneath his mask would die or go mad. The moral of the story being: a mask enables viewing the “face”, and we shouldn’t try to uncover what lies behind masks. And in answer to the question on Bowie: David Bowie is the sum of all his masks. There is no other Bowie, or a real, authentic Bowie behind the masks. And Pessoa did not “hide” behind seventy personas. Pessoa is composed of those seventy personas.


Jossef Krispel’s paintings are made Alla Prima, meaning paintings that are created in one session, one shot. Even when the remains of a previous painting peek out from beneath a layer of paint, it is a previous painting that was rejected and covered with a new one. In French this technique is called Premier Coup, meaning a painting in the “First Strike”, the first try. The quick painting is perceived here as an action that has the air of primacy, a display of power and perhaps even violence. This action is habituated and very stylized. I think of a swordsman dancing in front of the canvas, battling it and scathing it with a long and pointy tool, with measured and exact movements. Indeed, Krispel’s painting is a performative painting, a painting that documents and reflects a body in a quick and vigorous, yet stylized and exact physical motion. It is painting that reveres the virtuosic. The language of painting Krispel uses creates breathtaking spectacles of gleam and perfection. This is not a painting of searching, indecision and a multilayered concoction, but a painting of a quick sleight of the hand, that ends as if magic in a complete and convincing image. As a rule, virtuosic painting attempts to distance itself from the finality and humanity of the painter. A painting of this kind does not manifest signs of effort and exertion. This casual appearance requires tremendous effort from the painter, yet is not to be revealed to the viewer. The virtuosic painter should be quick, viral and seductive.


Some of the greatest virtuosos- Frans Hals, Boucher, Tiepolo, Watteau, Fragonard … but also Picasso, Manet, Warhol and Richter – are painters with self confidence, lacking complexes or existential melancholy. Their paintings occur as if magic before the viewers wondering eyes. Vital and sensual, as if asking to outwit death with their eternal youth, knowing full well that incidentally the jeering grin of death, which treats all this shallow and glittering beauty as the beauty of a flower, that by the end of the day will wither and wilt,  is reflected and stamped upon them. The excess effort for vitality and freshness creates the opposite effect. I recall the blood curling screams of the peacock in his most magnificent moments.


There is some of the Dionysian in the virtuosity with which David Bowie plays around with his characters, sexual identities and colorfulness. Because of his constant changes and transformations Dionysus is also considered the god of metamorphosis. Bowie, as a sphinx on one of Krispel’s canvases, is a metamorphosis of the hybrid essence: Half man (feminine, heavily made up), half dog. Picasso, Warhol and Richter (artists Krispel is in continuous dialogue with) have demonstrated through their careers how to reinvent yourself whenever you wish; the liberty to strip off or wear different shapes, to deceive those following you and to deny any possibility for one authentic identity. They have changing identities so as not to become a stylized and familiar brand. The freedom to paint a painting that is impersonal and synthetic denounces the option of a “natural” painting with an individual handwriting. This may be the reason why for a long time, painters have avoided signing the surface of their painting: as the signature might give in their hand writing and personal temperament.


On a second glance, I notice that the painting with the Make-Up / Made-Up inscription seems as a paraphrase to an early Ed Ruscha. I also remember that when Ruscha painted his first “inscription” paintings, he wished to assimilate Jasper Jones.


The history of painting is as that of a masquerade, taking place in a baroque mirror hall, where everyone is reflected into each other, countless times.

What the moon saw

Alexandra Zuckerman / What the moon saw

Opening: 14/03/2013   Closing: 19/04/2013

What the moon saw, exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
What the moon saw, exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
What the moon saw, exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
What the moon saw, exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Smoke, Pencil on paper, 59.4x42cm, 2012
House number seven, Pencil on paper, 42x29.7cm, 2012
Goat crying at the window, Pencil on paper, 42x29.7cm, 2012
Girl meets bear in the woods, Pencil on paper, 42x29.7 cm, 2012
Hole, Pencil on paper, 119x84 cm, 2012
Bears looking through a hole, Pencil on paper, 42x29.7cm, 2012

A series of new black drawings are exhibited in Alexandra Zuckerman’s new exhibition. The scenes constructed in them seem perhaps as a fairy tale, or perhaps threatening, whilst moving in the space between memory and wistfulness. What has the Moon Seen, asks Zuckerman, and spreads before us what may be seen, furthermore, she points out what may only be glanced at. Opaque doors, closed spaces, a keyhole and forest animals concealed in spaces or performing on a stage, all these are exhibited in the same joyless bacchanal.


Zuckerman draws from the world of Russian fairytales she heard as a child and intentionally interweaves it with influences from the world of Russian animation and illustration. The drawings themselves deal to a large extent with the appearances; they seem as toiling work of engraving, yet they are not. The flatness is their guiding principle. Each seemingly illusionistic space reminds us that we are in a display of sorts, that there is a stage before us, a play, an amusement meant for our eyes alone. Zuckerman reminds us that the secret, if indeed exists, lies elsewhere. The moon – that sees all – is in fact the one that is seen, subjected to the gaze. The moon, just as the eggs and the feminine-childlike body, is the empty space in the drawing that overcomes the fear of space that rediscovers the impossibility, magnificent in itself, to devise a fairy tale.


Alexandra Zuckerman was born in Moscow in 1981, an immigrated to Israel at the age of ten. She graduated from her studies in the Bezalel art academy in 2006, and received an award for excellence from the Department of Fine Arts, Bezalel. She was also awarded the Sharet scholarship from the America-Israel Culture Foundation. Zuckerman has exhibited a solo exhibition in the Noga Gallery project room, in Christian Nagel gallery in Berlin, in the “Open Space” sector in the Cologne art fair, where she represented the Christian Nagel Gallery, and in several group exhibitions in Israel and abroad.

Moon Walks

Matan Ben Tolila / Moon Walks

Opening: 24/01/2013   Closing: 08/03/2013

Moon Walks, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Moon Walks, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Moon Walks, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Moon Walks, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Moon Walks, Exhibition view, Noga Gallery of Contemporary Art, 2013
Windmill, oil on canvas, 190x140cm, 2012
Blue gate, oil on canvas, 115x95cm, 2012
Two moons of autumn, oil on canvas, 150x105cm, 2012
6 boxes, oil on canvas, 135x200cm, 2012
Ribbons in the wind, oil on canvas, 45x51cm each, 2012

Noga Gallery is happy to show the first solo exhibition of Matan Ben-Tolila.


Matan Ben-Tolila paints mental landscapes, as though they were exterior landscapes. He tantalizes our eyes with familiar and tangible objects, yet places for us un miss able tracks of illusion and riddle, a labyrinth, as though explicitly telling us: The image before you is in my mind and in your mind only.


A landscape stretching out, not a single soul appears. An empty space, with no possibility to place anything within it. An open and lit house – no one comes or goes, its entrances and exits are blocked. A mountain in the distance, no trail leads to it. Distant sceneries fading and collapsing into themselves. The meticulously drawn structures hold no substance, their walls do not connect to one another, and their spaces contain nothing. There is no door to enter through. There is no window to look out from.


For a moment he deceives us with colorfulness, in clean and clear lines, we are swiftly invited inside, to sit in the “Gazebo” and restfully ponder. Yet it then becomes apparent to us that the path leading up to it is blocked by a white unpainted area, an empty canvas that the artist’s hand chose to leave untouched. A momentary illusion will cause us believe that the billowing sheet in “Two Moons of Autumn” – on it are painted what seem to be perhaps moons, perhaps eyeballs – is an invitation to an exotic journey, a hedonistic search after a perfect beauty. But these two moons lead us to the ironic haiku song:


Press your eyeballs And there you have two moons of autumn [1]


If you search for beauty, search for it within yourself. Do not turn your gaze outside, to the scenery surrounding you, but press your eyes and materialize the beauty within you. Will you be willing to pay the price of pain that is entailed in pressing the eyeball? Is the search for beauty, color and magic not doomed to be a painful and agonizing process that compels us to close our eyes to the true reality that surrounds us?


In the painting “Blue Gate” we are left wondering in front of a childish playground, its simple colors and shapes show a fleeting illusion of childhood, an illusion that quickly fades while facing the two eyeballs, looking at us silently like two full moons. The metal gate threatens to turn into a guillotine before our very eyes, while they linger for another glance.


The moon, its beauty illuminating the night, does not shine its light from within itself, but is irradiated by the light of the sun. In itself it is opaque and impenetrable.


The paintings in the exhibition are full of light and color, a colorful palette, an almost “Pantone” color scale, colors hinting at the industrial and artificial. A palette that deliberately veers as far as possible from natural coloring. These colors are the making of the artist, painting a world where all the outlines and joints are his making. A creation entailing toiling preciseness, meticulous thoroughness, as though a carpenter or an expert metal worker – the making of a master craftsman.


Moon walking, the iconic treading of the astronaut walking on the moon, touching the ground, and leaping back off of it, their weight is no longer weight, their step is no longer a step. Moon walking, as Michael Jackson’s dance moves, is a deceiving walk, steps that repeat themselves with a misleading ease, where feet graze the ground, hover over it, hardly touching.


The act of painting wishes to assimilate the moon walk. To be laid on the canvas as though not painted but projected on it, as though it’s light and colors do not come from within itself, but from the gazing vision of the painter. The gaze will disappear and with it the sights, the colors and the structures.


And we, the viewers, standing between the painter’s eye and the image projected on the canvas, can only leave but a shadow of our figure; and just like it, will fade with the disappearance of the last rays of light and the disappearance of the gaze.


Tzila Hayun – creator and curator of interdisciplinary culture programs.

Matan Ben-Tolila was born in 1978, Kibbutz- Yavne.  Graduated his studies in the Bezalel Art Academy in 2006, and the Bezalel MFA program in 2010.


Ben-Tolila has exhibited in many group exhibitions, among them “Shesh-Besh” in the Petah-Tikva museum, curated by Hadas Maor. In the Lincoln center in New-York, Mani House in Tel Aviv, and more. He was twice awarded the Excellency award by the America Israel Culture Foundation, and was awarded the Presser award for Excellency in painting by the Bezalel Academy.