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Manya, Vera and Pola

2/1/16- 27/2/16

Artist: Ben Lam
Curator: Sophia Dekel-Caspi

Gallery talk
Saturday, 23 January 2016 12:00

Ben Lam enters the complex world of three historical figures and their wives
by entering their homes with his camera: He explores the homes of Israel’s
national poet Chaim Nachman Bialik and his wife Manya; of the first president
Chaim Weizmann and his wife Vera; and of Israel’s first prime minister
David Ben-Gurion and his wife Pola. Depictions of a bath sewing corner,
polishing kit and kitchen towel rod, guest areas (some humble and some
luxurious), desks and wood-paneled libraries, form only a few of
Lam’s fascinating photographs.

Lam engages in the personal, private and public space of historical figures,
designed for the most part by their wives, enabling him to mark out distinct
foundational moments in the Israeli visual culture. His intimate viewpoint
succeeds in momentarily lifting the veil of representation to enable a somewhat
invasive penetration of private space. Lam boldly draws closer with his digital
camera to various corners and objects, using the natural light suffusing the room.
The subject becomes the object and a portrait of its owner as Lam’s gaze seeks
the traces of life and the cultural field.

Ben Lam, Untitled (From Vera and David Chaim Weizmann`s residence), 2014, inkjet print

Nearby Galleries:

Jerusalem Artists’ House

The Jerusalem Artists House is situated in a historic building that once housed "The Bezalel School of Arts and Crafts," founded by Boris Schatz in 1906, today the current Bezalel Academy for Arts and Design. For a time the building housed the Bezalel National Museum, precursor of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem. When the Israel Museum was opened, the collections of the Bezalel National Museum were transferred to it, where they formed the initial core collection of the Museum. Since 1965, the House has served as home to the Association for Jerusalem Artists. In this capacity, the House has become a dynamic center for exhibitions, displaying unique and varied works of both Israeli and international artists. The annual exhibition plan includes a series focusing on prominent young artists exhibiting their works for the first time, as well as a series of retrospective works by veteran artists. In addition, the Artists House displays group exhibitions on a wide range of subjects, joint presentations between Israeli and international artists, as well as a variety of other activities.
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