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27.10 | Jerusalem Art Conference #6

A hybrid conference at the Van Leer Institute, Polonsky Building, 43 Jabotinsky Street, Jerusalem.


** Admission is subject to the Green Pass restrictions **


The conference will be live streamed online, for registered only.


Wednesday | 27.10.2021 | 12:00-19:00


In its 6th iteration, the Jerusalem Art Conference will be devoted to the theme of “Excess” – a subject that holds many topical, historical, and philosophical meanings.


Contemporary life is teeming with excessiveness, surpluses, and overflows. From mental unrest to floods, from torrents of data and an ever-changing social media feed to congested roads, from time management apps through a stream of political events to real life and online shopping sprees and a diet rich with ingredients that offer zero nourishment. Even the most revolutionary moments in human history were not characterized by excess to the extent that we are witnessing today. 


Excess entails questions of balance: does surplus in one place inevitably create shortage in another place? When is there too much and how does one deal with this abundance? Is excess, as philosopher Georges Bataille argues, a key factor in social and financial processes that lead to violence and wars?


Excess is also a fitting concept for thinking about Jerusalem – a city jam-packed with past, present, and future, crowded by the lingering presence of military commanders, statesmen, builders, religious leaders, artists, and poets who have been filling its physical and spiritual paths for thousands of years. In the conference we will examine the concept of “excess” and its manifestations in the local art scene alongside issues such as: art in the age of information overload, artificial intelligence and machine learning, psychedelic influences on contemporary art, psychoanalysis and the abject, excess in the art world, excess and freedom, and more.


Founded by Manofim Festival and Erev Rav and Harama Magazines, the Jerusalem Art Conference is aimed at connecting higher education institutions with artists, curators, artistic directors, and cultural practitioners. The previous conferences were devoted to the themes of “Signature,” “What Shall We Do With Art?” “Excess Demand,” “Trick,” and “The Moment of Truth.”


Conference curators and directors: Dr. Ronen Eidelman and Yonatan Amir (“Erev Rav”), Rinat Edelstein (“Manofim”, “Harama”)


Production: Alina Alexa


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Greetings and opening remarks + session 1 | 12:00-13:30


Inbal Hoffman | Work Schedule

A sculptor who challenges the very notion of ​​a sculpture, creating sculptural environments full of items and ephemerality, which speak of the conflict between the grind of everyday life and the passage of time, and the need to create something meaningful that will remain and capture the moment.

Inbal Hoffman is a multidisciplinary artist who works predominantly with sculpture, exploring the sublime in everyday life through the use of ready-made and cheap and available materials. Her works are labor-intensive and elaborate in nature, extracting beauty from banal materials and turning the material into an image. Her artworks have been purchased by the Israel Museum, and featured in four solo exhibitions and many group exhibitions and projects in Israeli and international galleries and museums.


Lital Bar Noy | Augmented Reality Art as a Window to a Radical Re-Demarcation of Boundaries

While virtual “filters” are created by the artist, they never stop forming and reforming on the face of those who “wear” them. Unlike painting, sculpture, film, or even performance, AR art is actively experienced by the users. The experience of using the virtual mask allows users to assimilate with it, blurring the identity of the “self,” and with it, also bridging the distance between the body of the artist, the artwork, and the viewer.

The talk will focus on the ways in which the visual overload created by filters facilitates the elimination of the dichotomic line between the physical and the virtual space, as well as the redefinition of gender boundaries and the demarcation of art and culture. 

Lital Bar Noy is a user experience designer and a curator who holds a bachelor’s degree from Shenkar Visual Communication Department and a master’s degree from Bezalel Policy and Theory of the Arts Program. She was an exchange student in the Department of Critical Studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, and received an academic merit award in 2018-2019. Bar Noy participated in Facebook’s internship program and for the past year has been working as a digital product designer at Microsoft.


Hannah Bruckmüller, Noa Ginzburg, Michal B. Ron | Abundance as a Queer Practice

What could count as relevant? A conventional reduction and disciplined focus maintain the canon and keep the discussion limited. A queer practice is needed as a challenge. We promote a theoretical abundance: insisting on minor issues; associating distant facts; pausing on details in the margins.

Hannah Bruckmüller is an art historian based in Vienna, Austria. In 2020 she received her Ph.D. from the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna. Her methodology focuses on archival research and feminist reading. Currently, she is preparing her Post-Doc Project on Domestic Publicity.

Noa Ginzburg is an installation artist working and living in New York and Tel Aviv. She is an alumna of the MFA Studio Art program at Hunter College in New York. Ginzburg’s work in drawing, sculpture, and installation practices light, color, and Deep Listening and play with observation and perception. She is part of the mutual aid organization Culture of Solidarity.

Michal B. Ron is an art historian and theoretician based in Berlin Germany. 2017 she received her Ph.D. in art history from the Free University Berlin. She researches the aspect of time in contemporary art and is a regular contributor to the trilingual online art magazine TOHU.


Az-oolay (Maybe then) Police Straight to the Heart Clown Officer. Family name: Will Be Better | Excess into Sacredness

How do you create a story? How do you heal a wound? How do you shift shape? Stories from a shift of a police officer in the Straight to the Heart Police on the streets of Jerusalem. 

Mode of operating in the realm of the heart and the city, using innocence, humor, tenderness, and a desire to work outside the box and convert excess into sacredness with love.

Officer Az-oolay is a clown officer who has been working in Jerusalem since 1st August, 2020 until there is peace in the city.  


Intermission | 13:30-14:00


Session 2 | 14:00-15:30


Yael Eylat Van Essen | Seen and Hidden – Big-data, Mapping, and Pattern Identification  

Reality in the digital age generates information overload that humans have no capacity to hold: As information storage possibilities become almost limitless, information continues to pile up and aggregate, and in many cases renders the individual pieces of information worthless when there is no effective way to access them. At the same time, however, new mapping practices make it possible to extract knowledge and connectivity patterns, conferring on the details new meanings and insights that can only be traced through the use of big-data. Moreover, in some cases, these insights can only be obtained by adding additional, “synthetic” information, generated by AI algorithms.

The lecture will center around a critical examination of the use of contemporary mapping technologies and explore the political ramifications of data collecting and mapping on an unprecedented scale.

Dr. Yael Eylat Van Essen is a scholar and curator specializing in the intersection of art, design, science, and technology.


Irit Sternberg | The Artist and the Machine: Artificial Intelligence between Creation and Production

Is “creative” AI a tool for enhancing productivity through mere imitation or does this technology have the power to uncover and underscore the unique and authentic human processes that stand at the core of the creative process?

Irit Sternberg is a designer, artist, and writer. She holds a master’s degree from the Cohen Institute at Tel Aviv University. She wrote her master’s thesis on feminist critique of AI.


Ben Benhorin | On NFT, Cryptoart, and Other Problems

Over the last year, we saw the infiltration of NFT into the mainstream, with practically every artist eager to make a profit from the new possibilities it opened. Despite the tremendous excitement surrounding the technology that offers independent creatives new income avenues that way exceeds their wildest dreams, there are some signs that indicate the opposite. Drawing on my work and familiarity with the world’s largest art community (, I will present some thoughts on the subject.

Ben Benhorin is a designer, lecturer, and digital artist. He is the head of Digital Product Design Program at Shenkar College. Specializes in meaningful interaction design solutions and code-based generative art.


Neta Moses | Reality is Virtual

Video in the shared space of the digital and the real.

Neta Moses is a video and installation artist. She graduated from the joint Computer Science and Screen-Based Arts Program of the Hebrew University and Bezalel Academy. 


Intermission | 15:30-16:00


Session 3 | 16:00-17:30 


Jeremy Biles | Toward a Sensibility of the Sacred: Anal Surrealism and the Erotics of Everyday Life

This talk draws upon psychoanalysis, surrealism, and the work of Georges Bataille in order to formulate an “anal surrealism” as the basis of an “erotics of everyday life”—a theory and practice predicated on energetic and interpretive excesses. Exploiting a curious link between the anus, the unconscious and the sacred—all sites of profound ambivalence — I adumbrate a “sensibility of the sacred,” an attitude of thought and an affective mode instigating limit experiences in which excessive ambivalence in various forms elicits an ecstatic disturbance of the boundaries that define the self in everyday life.

Jeremy Biles is an Associate Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and author of the book “Ecce Monstrum: Georges Bataille and the Sacrifice of Form.


Freedom Research Institute | Freedom Coming Out of Every Hole

Suave Shampoo, product placement, overdraft, existential anxiety, Netflix subscription, traffic jams, watching a video of a man falling on social media, CDC, ABC, frozen corn schnitzel, Stockholm syndrome, Ynet headlines, Haaretz headlines, financial anxiety, back pain, Galgalatz, migraines, social anxiety, side effects, ketchup packets, two in the fridge, maybe for another day, the French Revolution, the October Revolution, two world wars, maybe three, perhaps already four, the collapse of the Soviet Union, Free Economy, Global Economic Crisis, Occupy Wall Street, Rothschild Social Protest, Balfur Protest, planned blazes, overflowing floods, sun that must be covered, slaves to the routine by day, dreaming that something better is just around the corner at night, the world is more connected than ever before but the range of stimuli becomes smaller and smaller, we have grown accustomed, lost faith in any real power to make a difference. We must make a difference. We want to be different. Facilitate new channels of communication and collaborations, discover more and more partners for a huge party of gathering, preserving, exchanging, and sharing knowledge by all means available. Here’s to every life-preserving initiative, to every responsibility taking, to every giving in good faith. How can we truly benefit ourselves, our immediate environment, animals, vegetables and the whole world?

The Freedom Research Institute is a group of individuals who meet to examine and create the conditions for upholding freedom as an open resource: our mission is to bridge and facilitate the knowledge and the partnerships along the way through events, artmaking, public talks with specialists, round tables, cooperative initiatives and public actions.


Intermission | 17:00-17:15


Session 4 | 17:15-18:45


Dr. Ido Hartogsohn | Numinous Excess: Understanding Psychedelic Aesthetics

The colorful excess of psychedelic aesthetics has often excluded it from the mainstream art discourse. However, this lavish and unabashed surplus has deep roots in the psychedelic experience and the multidimensional and mathematical theology at its core. The lecture will touch on the characteristics of psychedelic aesthetics and its significance.

Dr. Ido Hartogsohn is a scholar of psychedelic culture. His book “American Trip: Set Setting and the Psychedelic Experience in the 20th Century” (2020) was published by MIT Press.


Anat Mandil, Rakefet Viner Omer | Figuration and Deformation in the work of Rakefet Viner Omer

A dialogue between curator Anat Mandil and artist Rakefet Viner Omer based on Deleuzian reading of her works, and in particular, Gilles Deleuze’s book

Francis Bacon: Logic of Sensation.”

Anat Mandil is an art scholar and curator focusing on a feminist curatorial practice. She holds a bachelor’s degree in gender and history of art and is currently completing her thesis “The Epistemological Status of Thought Images” in the Department of Art History at Tel Aviv University.

Rakefet Viner Omer was born in 1965 in Rishon Lezion. She studied at HaMidrasha School of Art and later in the MFA program of Bezalel Academy, and holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and film from Tel Aviv University. Her expressive works explore themes of identity and feminism, while challenging both social and artistic orders. She lives and works in Tel Aviv-Yafo. Her works are in the collections of the Ein Harod Museum, Bat Yam Museum, Bank Leumi, Serge Tiroche, Mitchell Forster (New York) and many private collections in Israel, New York, and Los Angeles. She received the 2008 Artistic Encouragement Award and the 2010 Miron Sima Prize for Painting. 


Tami Katz-Freiman | More Is More

The lecture will focus on aspects of excessiveness, overload, and exaggeration as these were manifested in the manifested in the exhibitions “OverCraft,” “Boys Craft,” “Mixed Emotions,” and “Wild Exaggeration.”

Tami Katz-Freiman is a contemporary art curator, art historian, writer and critic who has been living in Miami for over a decade. She started her curatorial activity in 1992, and has since curated group and solo exhibitions in prominent museums and exhibition venues in Israel and the US (where she also worked in the 1990s). Between 2010-2005, she served as head curator of Haifa Museum of Art. In 2017, she curated the Israeli pavilion at the Venice Biennale. Towards the end of 2021, she will return to live in Israel.


Yonatan Amir | Everyday Life Dystopias – On the Work of Yoram Kupermintz

Yoram Kupermintz’s body of work encompasses diverse mediums and styles: from his 1980s and 1990s paintings and the book “October/War Diary” he published towards the end of that period, through the photographs and media works he created in the 2000s, to his current films and sound works. However, an overview of his oeuvre reveals commonalities: a sense of catastrophe reawakened time after time in entirely different images, and aggressive aesthetics manifested in blunt manipulations, heightened sensitivity to flaws, and a tendency to showcase them. The lecture will explore Yoram Kupermintz’s works from different periods and series, and analyze the aesthetic, emotional, and political excess that characterizes them.

Yonatan Amir is an art critic, lecturer and co-editor of the online art magazine Erev Rav, and a co-founder and co-editor of the Jerusalem Art Conference. Amir teaches in the School of Multidisciplinary Art at Shenkar College, Pardes Art School (a religious institution for higher education), and in the curatorial program at the Schecter Institute of Jewish Studies. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Bezalel Fine Arts Department, a master’s degree in cultural studies from the Hebrew University, and is currently writing his doctoral dissertation in the History of Art Department of Ben Gurion University.