I FIND THAT MANY MATERIALS TODAY ARE NOT STABLE - MEANING THEY CHANGE COLORS OR FADE OR DISINTEGRATE OVER TIME. IF I AM WORKING ON SOMETHING FOR A YEAR, I DO NOT WANT IT TO DISAPPEAR OR FALL APART FIVE YEARS LATER.
FOR "THE COMMERCE OF INFERTILITY" PROJECT IT TOOK A YEAR TO FIND THE RIGHT POLYMER THAT DID NOT MELT THE READY-MADE BABIES.
Creating "Lashon HaRav" for example, was an unbelievable adventure: I could find no one anywhere in the world to fabricate the tongues (Today this would be a 3-D printing no brainer.)
Eventually, I made them out of FIMO polymer clay, hand mixing colors, baking in my kitchen oven, and using fingernail polish to make them look wet.
The final result I think works really well, but getting there was complicated with a lot of dead ends.
I HAD JUST TURNED SIXTY AND WAS SUDDENLY CONFRONTED WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY FALLING ILL, SOMETIMES FATALLY, AS WELL AS MOURNING THE DEATH OF MY FATHER.
I HAD WEIRD MEMORIES OF VARIOUS STAINS AND SMEARS INVOLVING MY FATHER’S ILLNESSES, THINGS THAT WERE AT ONCE DISGUSTING, BUT ALSO STRANGELY BEAUTIFUL.
I ALSO BEGAN TO LOOK AT THINGS LIKE MY OWN OSTEOPOROSIS AND EVEN WHAT FRIENDS SUFFERING FROM PANCREATIC CANCER’S CELLS LOOKED LIKE.
THERE IS A KIND OF BEAUTY IN ALL THESE THINGS. THERE IS ALSO SOMETHING IMITATIVE ABOUT THE WAY WATERCOLORS BLEED AND SPREAD- SIMILAR TO A VIRUS: THE PROCESS IMITATED REALITY. MY WORK IS A CONTINUAL RESPONSE TO WHATEVER IS HAPPENING AROUND ME.
For many artists this is an extremely challenging time. Lots of artists have their studios outside their home and they simply could not get there.
Setting my studio at home was a necessity when my children were younger. During the lockdown I just went upstairs and worked, and a great many projects got finished. With art supply shops, etching studio and my printer being closed, and no Amazon deliveries to Israel - my circle of resources was vastly circumscribed.
So, like many artists, pre-Pesach, I did a massive clean, and found papers and supplies I had forgotten about. I cannot say I did a massive, new body of work, but I started working on small personal pieces. I think a lot of artists everywhere returned to paper and drawing.
All photos courtesy of the artist