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Article

Absalon  

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Active in France.

Born 1964, in Tel-Aviv; died 10 October 1993, in Paris.

Installation artist, environmental artist, video artist.

Absalon lived and worked in Paris, where he studied at the École des Beaux-Arts under Christian Boltanski.

Absalon produced maquettes for ‘Utopian’ furniture upholstered entirely and uniformly in aseptic white plastic. Totally impractical, his furniture simply represents a desire to mark a departure from everyday convention. There is a strong element of play in some of his work, as in ...

Article

Israeli, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 11 November 1961, in Umm el Fahm.

Painter (including mixed media), draughtsman. Military subjects, figures, still-lifes, animals.

Asim Abu-Shakra was educated at the college of fine arts in Tel Aviv, where he worked as a teacher in 1987 and ...

Article

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Born 1935, in Tel Aviv; died 1964, as the result of an accident.

Painter (including mixed media).

This artist was educated at the Bezalel college of art in Jerusalem. He was awarded the ministry of education and culture prize in 1958...

Article

Turkish, 20th – 21st century, female.

Active also active in France.

Born 2 September 1953, in Izmit.

Painter, collage artist. Landscapes, urban landscapes.

Groupe Art-cloche.

Neveser Aksoy studied at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris under Mattey de l’Étang and received a DEA in fine arts from the University of Paris I....

Article

Aurélie Verdier

(b Saïda, Algeria, 1953).

French painter, sculptor, photographer, film maker, writer and installation artist of Algerian birth. Born to Spanish parents, he was much affected by North African as well as Southern European culture. He trained at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Le Havre. Despite a pervasive and diverse use of media, Alberola often stressed the coexistence of his different artistic practices as leading to painting alone. His paintings relied heavily on evocative narratives, at once personal and ‘historical’. Alberola conceived of his role as a storyteller, on the model of African oral cultures. Convinced that narratives could not be renewed, he argued that a painter’s main task was to reactivate his work through contact with his pictorial heritage. The main points of reference for his paintings of the early 1980s were Velázquez, Manet or Matisse, whose works he quoted in a personal way. In the early 1980s he undertook a series of paintings inspired by mythological subjects, which he combined with his own history as the principal subject-matter of his work. The biblical story of Susannah and the Elders as well as the Greek myth of Actaeon provided his most enduring subjects, both referring to the act of looking as taboo, as in ...

Article

Chika Okeke-Agulu

(b Cairo, May 22, 1963).

American painter, sculptor, fibre and installation artist of Egyptian birth. Amer, one of the few young artists of African origin to gain prominence in the late 1990s international art scene, studied painting in France at the Villa Arson EPIAR, Nice (MFA, 1989), and the Institut des Hautes Etudes en Art Plastique, Paris (1991). She subsequently moved to New York. She is best known for her canvases in which paint and embroidery are combined to explore themes of love, desire, sexuality, and women’s identity in a patriarchal world. Amer’s use of Embroidery, historically regarded as a genteel female craft, to create images of women fulfilling their sexual desires without inhibition, recalls the provocations and strategies of 1970s Western feminist art. However, her work also reflects her alarm at the incremental curbing of women’s social and political freedoms in her native Egypt following the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, especially after the regime of Gamal Abdel Nasser ended in ...

Article

Iranian, 20th century, male.

Active in the USA since 1960.

Born 1939, in Tehran.

Sculptor. Architectural installations.

New Image (related to).

Siah Armajani trained as an architect while studying the philosophy of mathematics. He moved to Minnesota.

Architecture constitutes his main source of inspiration and he has brought together all his works in a ...

Article

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Born 1908, in Kharkov, Ukraine; died 1974.

Painter, pastellist, collage artist.

Arieh Aroch emigrated to Palestine and studied at the Bezalel college in Jerusalem in 1924. He settled in Paris in 1934. As of 1945, he was mainly concerned with theatre set and costume design. His artistic career ended in ...

Article

Michael Jay McClure

(b Istanbul, 1961).

Turkish video and installation artist, active also in England and Pakistan. He was educated at Mimar Sinan University, the Sorbonne, Paris, Los Angeles Santa Monica College, and the University of California, Los Angeles (MFA, 1988). Ataman holds a prominent place among artists exploring identity, sexuality, documentation, and the cultural politics of the Middle East and its diasporas; his work echoes that of Shirin Neshat, Omer Fast, Mona Hatoum, and the more commercial filmmaker Fatih Akin, among others.

Producing multi-channel ‘video sculptures’, Ataman explores states of psychological, cultural, and social displacement, often employing massive amounts of footage in a quasi-documentary style. An early piece, Women Who Wear Wigs (1999; see images tab for additional illustration), is a representative example. On a four-channel display, four Turkish women reveal their reasons for donning wigs: a reporter who recently lost her hair due to chemotherapy, a transsexual prostitute forced to shave her head by the police, a targeted terrorist who disguises herself, and a student banned from wearing a traditional headscarf in school. The wig, which conceals and connects these women, parallels how Ataman uses video: as a medium that both reveals and obfuscates its subjects. A spectator must negotiate not only the truth of the stories but also their syncopated broadcasts distributed over the space of the exhibition. Indeed, Ataman often uses the situation of the screens to disorienting sculptural effect. In ...

Article

Israeli, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1953, in Tel Aviv.

Sculptor, draughtsman, mixed media.

Ilan Averbuch studied at Wimbledon Art School in London, at the School of Visual Arts in New York and at Hunter College.

In his choice of materials and structures, Averbuch’s body of work is akin to Land Art; he uses materials in their primal state - ­frequently stone but also wood and lead - in order to produce his ‘archaeologies’, compositions that often evoke ancient and sacred places but also create their own symbolic language. His fragmented, yet dynamic and monumental sculpture is laboriously constituted piece by piece, almost as if he were rebuilding after some cataclysmic event rather than starting from scratch....

Article

Turkish, 20th century, male.

Installation artist.

Vahap Avsar took part in the Biennale of contemporary art in Havana in 1994.

Article

Israeli, 20th century, male.

Born 12 August 1933, in Vilnius, Lithuania.

Painter (including mixed media), watercolourist, pastellist. Still-lifes, landscapes.

Samuel Bak settled in Israel in 1948, where he studied at the Bezalel art school. In 1956 he went to Paris, where he attended the École des Beaux-Arts. In 1959 he moved to Rome, and in 1966 he resettled in Israel with periods in New York City (1974-77) and Paris (1980-84). In 1984 he moved to Switzerland. He employs a traditional narrative style in the manner of Bruegel and Bosch to paint ‘innocent’ subjects such as landscapes and still-lifes, contriving to ‘pervert’ them in a surrealistic manner; thus, a pear got up in a piece of cloth and cinched by a belt suddenly emerges as a breast protruding from a brassiere. Equally, a still-life by Samuel Bak may feature certain components only in silhouette or, for example, a section of a stem glass that emerges as a ‘window’ on the landscape beyond....

Article

Lebanese, 20th century, male.

Born 12 July 1942, in Beirut.

Painter, sculptor, photographer, video artist.

Kinetic Art.

Roland Baladi permutated various techniques, notably drawings and photographs, to produce the Photograms he exhibited in Beirut in 1962. In 1971, Roland Baladi exhibited a piece entitled Cinetone...

Article

Bazaar  

Mohammad Gharipour

Bazaar, which is rooted in Middle Persian wāzār and Armenian vačaṟ, has acquired three different meanings: the market as a whole, a market day, and the marketplace. The bazaar as a place is an assemblage of workshops and stores where various goods and services are offered.

Primitive forms of shops and trade centres existed in early civilizations in the Near East, such as Sialk, Tepe in Kashan, Çatal Hüyük, Jerico, and Susa. After the 4th millennium BC, the population grew and villages gradually joined together to shape new cities, resulting in trade even with the remote areas as well as the acceleration of the population in towns. The advancement of trade and accumulation of wealth necessitated the creation of trade centres. Trade, and consequently marketplaces, worked as the main driving force in connecting separate civilizations, while fostering a division of labour, the diffusion of technological innovations, methods of intercultural communication, political and economic management, and techniques of farming and industrial production....

Article

Turkish, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1958.

Born 17 January 1929, in Istanbul.

Watercolourist, painter (mixed media), collage artist, engraver, draughtsman.

Albert Bitran originally moved to Paris to study architecture, but he soon abandoned it for painting and became a pupil of Fernand Léger....

Article

Egyptian, 20th century, male.

Born 1919, in Cairo.

Painter (mixed media), collage artist.

Mounir Canaan began his artistic career in the early 1940s and moved into abstraction in 1946. Normally an oil on canvas painter, he also created assemblages of wooden pieces, and collages of printed documents which he arranged along geometrical lines. He showed work at several collective exhibitions in Cairo and at international events including the São Paulo Biennale (...

Article

American, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 20 September 1941, in Tacoma (Washington).

Glassmaker, sculptor, installation artist.

Dale Chihuly studied at the University of Washington, Seattle, where he received a BA in 1965, the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1967, where he obtained an MS, and Rhode Island School of Design, where he obtained an MFA in ...

Article

Francis Summers

American photographers and conceptual artists of Irish and Israeli birth. Collaborating under a corporate-sounding name, Michael Clegg (b Dublin, 1957) and Martin Guttman (b Jerusalem, 1957) began making photographs together in 1980. Using corporate group portraits as their resource material, they made constructed photographs in the manner of 17th-century Dutch paintings. A Group Portrait of the Executives of a World Wide Company (1980; see 1989 exh. cat., p. 33) shows five suited men seated in a brooding darkness, their heads and hands illuminated in a chiaroscuro effect. The reference to historical paintings is made particularly explicit in The Art Consultants (1986; see 1989 exh. cat., p. 37): the figures are posed directly in front of a canvas so as to mirror the painted figures, illustrating Clegg & Guttman’s proposition that within the hierarchies of power, the essential nature of pose, emblems and dress have remained relatively unchanged for centuries. Pushing these images to the point of indetermination, Clegg & Guttman also occasionally carried out actual commissions (although not always successfully), as well as creating collaged and altered portraits such as ...

Article

Susan T. Goodman

(b Meknès, Morocco, 1942).

Israeli painter and mixed-media artist of Moroccan birth. He emigrated to Israel in 1949 and studied art at the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem (graduating in 1971) and the Central School of Art in London before receiving a BA degree in Social Science and History of Art at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem (1973). His mixed-media works of the 1970s conveyed his sense of physical dislocation at being estranged as a Moroccan refugee in Israel; the human figure appeared as an essential element of this theme of displacement and homelessness. In 1975 he returned to drawing and painting in works such as Analogical Work on Computers (1977; Tel Aviv Mus. A.), in which faceless, generalized figures function as symbols in a non-specific space. From 1975 to 1977 Cohen Gan lived in New York, where he studied at Columbia University (MFA, 1977), before settling in Tel Aviv, where he combined scientific systems with introspective autobiographical references in narrative paintings such as the series ...

Article

Tunisian, 20th century, female.

Active in France from 1954.

Born 5 September 1930, in Ferryville.

Painter (mixed media/gouache), collage artist. Stage sets, designs for tapestries.

Lily Designe lives and works in France, where she married. She uses a variety of techniques occasionally based on collage, with frequent references to the supernatural aspects of the theatre. She tends more towards the magical than the fantastic....