Eurovision Blonde Contest 2008

Watching the Eurovision Song Contest last night, I could not help notice that while each country had a different representative delivering its votes, somehow the female representatives showed similar characteristics. I am a firm believer in the law of large numbers and thus think a large sample size can sometimes reveal significant issues. As an artist I use mosaics from time to time to express various opinions, and so after composing this new work I think we can agree Europe still thinks women are nothing more than eye candy:

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For higher resolution, press F11 and then click the image

 

Following is a legend with the name of each country corresponding to each photo’s location:

United Kingdom Ukraine Estonia Bosnia & Herzegovina Belgium
Latvia Bulgaria Serbia Israel Cyprus
Iceland Romania Portugal Hungary Armenia
Czech Republic Spain The Netherlands Turkey Malta
Ireland Switzerland Azerbaijan Croatia Belarus
Russia Montenegro Georgia Denmark

 

 

* Out of a total of 43 representatives, 14 males were excluded.
Insignificant minor retouching was done on some of the photos.
The Turkish representative’s shirt was heavily retouched to remove some superimposed graphics

I Was a Cliché at Age 14

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The image above (click it for a larger size) is an advanced draft of a new artwork of mine. I will be presenting it in a collective work of Israeli portraits by Ehrlich Contemporary Art Gallery in the Florentin Biennale in Tel-Aviv, this coming May.

Format: Digital print
Dimensions: 210mm x 297mm
Name: Undetermined as of now. Possible names in descending order of probability include

  • I Was a (Already?) Cliché at Age 14
  • cliche93
  • Xerox-uality

Technique: The work is made out entirely out of digital-age found objects, that is, readymade images that were found on the Internet and were not photographed by me. The 12 images are all self portraits of 14 year old Israeli girls, each one published at Bona.co.il (now defunct), an Israeli social networking website for high school students. The text below each image is the stats that appear in each of the online profiles correspondingly (stats were accurate when gathered, but may have changed since).
Theme: While the complete artwork stands by itself, it is the first of a series of planned works, all of which present my commentary on the role and image of contemporary women as reflected by the online presence of the next emerging crop.

Feel free to check out the online profiles, by clicking the link that corresponds with each photo’s location.

x x x x
x x x x
x x x x

As always, I welcome your comments and observations. Oh, I forgot to mention I am toying with the idea of sending a personal invitation to the exhibit to each of the girls.

HotOrNot for Über-Geeks

You probably remember how addictive was rating girls on HotOrNot.com a while back. A recently launched NYC Jelly project compares website design by showing you a screen capture of two homepages at a time, and lets you pick the winner. It is the ultimate HotOrNot for geeks and it is called CommandShift3.

Besides being utterly addictive, it is a great way to check out the current Web2.0 trends. At this moment in time, these are the best and worst designed websites:

All Time Best And Worst Website Design (as of January 4th, 2008) - CommandShift3.com

He Raised His Finger, Pointed At The Photo And Said ‘I Want To Have This!’

Readers of my blog may have been wondering about the outcome of the Bread and Roses art sale I participated in. A couple of days ago I was quite taken aback by a phone call. It was the organizers of the charity auction calling to ask for my address, as they wanted to send me a cheque. You see, this specific charity event appealed to me, as aside from actually helping people in need, which is always nice, the organizers promised that the money collected from each artwork sold would be divided and 75% of it would be donated, while 25% were promised to be paid back to the artist.

Now, while receiving money is always fun, this cheque represents the first ever artwork of mine that was sold in an exhibit, by a stranger who actually raised his finger towards the wall, pointed to my work and said ‘I want to have this!’

The sold artwork is called ‘Jaffa Gate, Summer 2006‘ and it is a photo mosaic of one of the gates in the wall that surrounds the old city of Jerusalem, created using photos of the 119 fallen Israeli soldiers during the 2nd Lebanon War. The actual print size of the work is 80×60cm, which is important as it looks different from a distance and up close. Use the + zoom option to have a similar experience:

 

Yes, It Is Bread We Fight For – But We Fight For Roses, Too!

This coming Saturday one of my art works will be offered for sale at a charity art sale. Me and about two hundred other leading artists are participating in a one day public event that will hopefully result in a considerable monetary contribution to the Workers Advice Center‘s ‘Women and Work’ project which aims to help Arab women break the cycle of poverty.

You are cordially invited to spend your Oneg Shabbat gazing at contemporary art (mostly paintings and photos), and possibly buying an artwork, thus helping a worthy cause. Check out the (partial) online catalogue here.

Where:
Minshar Art School
18 David Chachami street
Tel-Aviv
Israel

When:
Saturday, November 10th, 2007
From 10am to 10pm

Admission:
Free.

Bread And Roses Charity Art Sale - Invitation

…As we come marching, marching, unnumbered women dead
Go crying through our singing their ancient cry for bread.
Small art and love and beauty their drudging spirits knew.
Yes, it is bread we fight for — but we fight for roses, too!

Bread and Roses – James Oppenheim, 1911

First Animated Documentary – ‘Ryan’ by Chris Landreth

Ryan Larkin, 1943-2007Some claim that Winsor McCay’s Sinking of the Lusitania (1918) is the first animated documentary just because it is an animation about something that really happened. I disagree with that notion as in my opinion it is merely a reenactment of true events done by animation. Chris Landreth’s short animated film Ryan (2004), on the other hand, is in my opinion, the very first animated documentary – or docu-mation as coined by THIN AIR. It is a recorded conversation turned into animation, between the director and the subject of the film, Ryan Larkin, an animation pioneer who passed away this year.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CrsVa3CzQj0

You can read Larkin’s obituary here and a tribute here.

Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin Coloring Book

Assassination of Rabin family activity pack: Noa Ben Artzi's eulogy

This is an art work I created in 2006, consisting of coloring pages created from television images embedded in our collective Israeli memory. The work was originally displayed in Jerusalem as a ‘family activity pack’ consisting of coloring books and crayons for the kids, and four television monitors for their parents, showing the actual events, including the Kempler video, the TV news announcement, President Clinton’s eulogy, and the state funeral.

Assassination of Rabin family activity pack: Yaacov Eilon announcing PM demise

Some might think this artwork is in poor taste, and I would agree. It is my criticism on the commemoration of Rabin in Israel, particularly within the Israeli educational system, which consists more of ‘Rabin as a grandpa’ and ‘killing people because of their ideas is bad’ and less about what we can do today to stop the next political assassination, how raising the level of debate in this country strengthens us, and why it is still possible to get elected for office in Israel without expressing any opinions or plans.

Assassination of Rabin family activity pack: Aaron Barnea announcing PM demise

Assassination of Rabin family activity pack: President Clinton's eulogy

The complete ready-to-print coloring book can be downloaded here.

Update: You can read this post in Hebrew here.

Jaffa Gate, Summer 2006

I participated in a group exhibit called ‘Postcard City’ (a pun in Hebrew), in which each artist designed a postcard for the city of Jerusalem on its 40th year of reunification. The actual print size of the work is 80×60cm, which is important as it looks different from a distance and up close. Use the + zoom option to have a similar experience.

 

The photo is of Jaffa gate in Jerusalem, created using a mosaic of photos of the 119 fallen Israeli soldiers during the 2nd Lebanon War.

Absolut Israeli Elections 2006

I participated in a group exhibit in light of the coming Israeli elections held this week (Tuesday). A couple of months ago we started a project which uses the visual language of the well known Absolut Vodka advertisement campaign, to let each participant show his stand on a chosen political issue or party. With so many disgruntled people, some of the produced photos were a bit on the cynical side ;)

Absolut Hope.

All the participating images are ‘straight photography’, shot on 4×5″ Sinar cameras – and aside from some minor Photoshop retouching, what you see is exactly what was shot in the studio. The entire project was featured on Israel’s leading photography magazine, Contact (now discontinued).