Naama Arad at Artport TLV

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Artist: Naama Arad

Exhibition title: Head Over Heels

Venue: Artport TLV, Tel Aviv, Israel

Date: August 30 – October 1, 2016

Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Artport TLV

A gym mat made of carefully cut and reassembled venetian blinds; a carpet which pattern is created by a multitude of metal staples individually applied by the artist with a manual stapler; a curtain which fabric consists of metal clips tight one to the other; these are only some of the conceptuallyartisanal and timeconsuming tasks Naama Arad gives to herself in order to create her unique works of art. At the same time the results of these tasks are never immediately showing the amount of energy that the artist invested in their making; quite the opposite they are presented with a degree of nonchalance and carelessness that is deeply organic to Arad’s position as an artist. This contradictory position—the artist as laborious maker of objects empty of any functional, social or aesthetic value—becomes even more acute when the result carries a monumental and architectural tone; this is particularly visible in two cases: the first is a series of black lines through which the artist took control of the peculiar shape of the exhibition space hosting her solo show at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art in 2015; the second is EL AL (2012) in which a found image of a Roman arch is printe—scaled down to 355 x 291 cm—Xeroxed, shredded and finally exhibited hanging from the ceiling.

In her new body of work all the aforementioned issues are still present but at the same time they coexist with a new desire to ‘humanize’ living and nonliving
forms. Deeply aligned with the current discourse within contemporary culture—which links artificial intelligence to animism—and yet completely disconnected, Arad’s recent oeuvres can be defined as “anatomical détournement”; through these actions a metal dustpan turned into a female foot; a lamp becomes a standing figure, approaching us with its food and brain “on view”; a cactus plant and two Hookah pipes appear to us in their true phallic shapes. Often constructed through a symbiotic relationship—the clay and the metal, the cactus and the pipes—this new body of work is driven by a unique position that stands between the psychoanalyst and the bricoleur, the artistic and the childish, the apathetic and the emotional.

–Nicola Trezzi

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Naama Arad, The Valley Spirit Never Dies, 2016
Shredded black & white laser prints, tape, air conditioner, 100×70 cm

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Naama Arad, Great Aspirations, 2016
Cactus, plant, Hookah pipes, 90x85x45 cm

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Naama Arad, Girl, 2016
Pencil on paper, nail, metal, rubber sink stoppers, 50×70 cm

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Naama Arad, Handle With Care, 2016
Metal dustpan, plaster, acrylic paint, 78x26x34 cm

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Naama Arad, Girl, 2016
Pencil on paper, nail, metal, rubber sink stoppers, 50×70 cm

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Naama Arad, Girl, 2016 (detail)
Pencil on paper, nail, metal, rubber sink stoppers, 50×70 cm

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Naama Arad, Handle With Care, 2016
Metal dustpan, plaster, acrylic paint, 78x26x34 cm

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Naama Arad, Brother at your side, 2016
Steel, foam board, Aluminum venetian blinds, invisible tape, Wilson socks, 120x30x103 cm

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Naama Arad, Brother at your side, 2016 (detail)
Steel, foam board, Aluminum venetian blinds, invisible tape, Wilson socks, 120x30x103 cm

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Naama Arad, Casual Friday, 2016
Pencil on paper, folder, ashtray, 22.5x50x7 cm

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Naama Arad, #$@&%*!, 2016
Clay, thumbtack, plastic bag, 15×23 cm

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Naama Arad, Self Portrait as a Lamp, 2016
Lamp, clay, sandwich bags, Terrazzo tile, 180x180x40 cm

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Naama Arad, Self Portrait as a Lamp, 2016 (detail)
Lamp, clay, sandwich bags, Terrazzo tile, 180x180x40 cm

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Naama Arad, Self Portrait as a Lamp, 2016 (detail)
Lamp, clay, sandwich bags, Terrazzo tile, 180x180x40 cm

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Naama Arad, Battered Wife, 2016
Mixed media, 95x52x10 cm

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