Braverman Gallery, Tel-Aviv Jaffa | Israel | 8 July- 15 October 2021
Curator Ami Barak
Braverman Gallery is pleased to present Nira Pereg’s new solo exhibition Twilight Zones, on view from July 8 through October 15. Over the past two decades, Nira Pereg’s work has explored the various systems and structures that shape our daily lives. Her renowned multi-channel video installations question the authority of the ‘real’, conceptually echoing the very essence of the medium she uses. Through an ingenious use of sound and spatial manipulations, Pereg disrupts the conventional perception of space and time, to challenge the reign of dominant, yet often veiled ideologies.
In Twilight Zones, Pereg continues her investigation of borders and barriers, both as material objects and as social constructs. Including video and sculpture, the exhibition mines the complexities of physical restraint mechanisms enacted within a highly charged socio-political landscape; ones further exaggerated by the movement restrictions following the 2020 pandemic. Reflecting on the increasingly growing use of barriers in public spaces, this new body of work evokes the various manifestations of and possible alternatives to the politics of separation.
Through the exploration of small–scale—official and makeshift—means of restriction, Twilight Zones probes concepts of proximity and distance, the public and the private, sacred and profane, power and ideology. In her practice, Pereg works within a set of pre-established rules and conditions which she creates for herself. While her work is rooted in documentary practice, Pereg developed what she calls her own ״play of resolutions״. The sanctions on movement during the Covid–19 lockdowns had driven Pereg to predominantly work in the studio — with the new public health regulations eerily mimicking the artist’s practice of working under a set of controlled provisions.
During the past year, Pereg restricted herself to a very concise vocabulary using fencing artifacts such as red and white caution tape, safety cones, metal barricades, and rocks, thus locking herself indoors with the very objects used to block the spaces outdoors.
In turning seemingly mundane objects into sculptures with ornamental qualities, Pereg strips them from their functionality and ascribes them to political meaning. Curator Ami Barak writes of the exhibition: ״The title Tosefet Shabbat in Hebrew (meaning ״Sabbath Supplement״) is the term used for ״adding the profane to the holy״.״
This term allows observance of the sabbath to last slightly longer than the prescribed time, extending it from 24–hours to 25–hours. Accordingly, the title of this show refers to the extension of time and holiness as leeway for urgency. Twilight Zones, says Barak, ״in a free–form translation into English, refers to that 25th hour, characterizing an area wherein two different ways of life, or states of existence, meet.״
The works in Twilight Zones stem from Pereg’s seminal 2008 video work SABBATH 2008 and can be read as a sequel and a direct development of the core issues posed by the work. However, as the retelling of a story always results in the emergence of a new story, the video diptych titled THEOS & KRATEO juxtaposes two intersections that are closed in anticipation of the Sabbath. In observing the particularities of these two locations, the body of work in twilight zones presents a nuanced duet of order and spontaneity through video, performance, and sculpture. The gestalt of this exhibition points to the core question engraved at the mere existence of the state of Israel — that of the full integration between religion and state, with its lingering effects. Pereg alludes to the semi–institutionalized separation in a place where makeshift borders and counterfeit barriers constantly morph in shape and meaning.
As with much of Pereg’s work, the point of departure is the ready-made — whether in the form of a quote from reality or as a material object. Studying and replicating these objects of separation, creating variations and hybrids, Pereg rendered them into protocols, eventually constituting the artwork itself. The artist says: ״These artifacts play a crucial role in the ways we are warned, redirected, and blocked, all over the world. It seemed to me that the more our public spaces emptied out of people, the more artifacts were placed in them to block us away — like a stage void of actors, but full of props. These props, a result of governmental policy, became the new ornaments of our cities, inflation of accumulated, reiterated signs, objects, and fencing techniques. They are often seen together, empowering each other, in a kind of bureaucratic hysteria.״
Twilight Zones questions the constant merger of traditions, politics, and objects. It highlights how we overflow public space with barricades, and in return neglect all symbolic thresholds.
אמנות | ביקורת אמנות- תוספת שבת TWILIGHT ZONES
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