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When it comes to the subject of Israel, nothing is simple; not its history, its geography, its politics, its peoples, or its multicultural and religious core. The points of view are as varied and passionate as the people who populate this land, a little smaller than New Jersey (8,000 square miles), yet large enough to rivet the world's attention. It is a site of conflict, ancient and recent, and of promise.
The new exhibition, "The Compromised Land: Recent Photography and Video from Israel," organized by the Neuberger Museum of Art of Purchase College, confronts many of Israel's issues head on. Exploring the themes of coexistence and conflict, history and memory, and the importance of land, the work of twenty-one contemporary artists will be on view in this exhibition through Dec. 1, 2013.
"The Compromised Land" revolves around the notion of land, which, in Israel, is regarded as a sacred, as well as a geographical, economic, social, and political organism - rooted in the psyche and culture of its peoples, and thousands of years of history. Israel's conflicts, history, and culture shadow daily life and permeate artistic expression. The work of established and emerging artists, who are emotionally and intellectually invested in their country's fate, gives voice to their sense of unease and threat, as they consider, reveal, interpret, and question Israel's politics, culture, and future. The exhibition also examines Israeli photography and video, practices that dominate contemporary Israeli art, and for which Israel is internationally recognized.
The featured artists include: Boaz Arad, Yael Bartana, Joseph Dadoune, Nir Evron, Barry Frydlender, Dani Gal, Ori Gersht, Dor Guez, Oded Hirsch, Miki Kratsman, Sigalit Landau, Dana Levy, Shahar Marcus, Adi Nes, Nira Pereg, Gilad Ratman, Michael Rovner, Lior Shvil, Sharon YaAri, and Rona Yefman with Tanja Schlander.
"The Compromised Land: Recent Photography and Video from Israel" is curated by Helaine Posner, Senior Curator of Contemporary Art, and guest curator Lilly Wei; and is accompanied by a fully-illustrated 96-page catalogue with essays by Ory Dessau; Ron Pundak, Israeli historian and chairman of the Israeli Peace NGO Forum; and the co-curators.
Support for the exhibition is provided by Artis, Helen Stambler Neuberger and Jim Neuberger, Susan and James Dubin, and the Office of Cultural Affairs, Consulate General of Israel in New York. Additional funding is provided by the Friends of the Neuberger Museum of Art and the Purchase College Foundation. Support for the residency of artist Gilad Ratman is provided by the Israel Institute, which is dedicated to enhancing knowledge and study of modern Israel. Additional support is provided by the UJA-Federation of New York in Westchester.
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