MIDDAY SUMMER DREAM / Group Show
Gilad Efrat, Ami Faytchevitz, May Israel, Alon Kedem, Elyassaf Kowner, Olaf Kühnemann, Naomi Mendel, Rakefet Viner Omer
July 2 – August 15, 2015
Curator: Yham Hameiri
While daydreaming a person briefly disconnects from his immediate environment, his grasp on reality is blurred, and instead he experiences a sort of visual fantasy, in which there are sometimes hopes or aspirations, that one imagines are about to occur. Usually, this phenomenon occurs due to a complex reality or because a temporary break from it is a type of psychological solution, a time out for an “inventory of problems” that pops up in what is experienced as reality.
In Feinberg Projects summer show, the artists cope with Israel’s complex emotional reality through daydreaming, which constitutes a kind of filter by means of which they develop new ways and viewpoints to look at and examine this intensive reality.
Freudian psychology interprets daydreams as an expression of repressed drives, similar to those revealed in night dreams. Like night dreams, daydreams are also an example of wish-fulfillment, which are able to rise to the surface thanks to relaxed censorship. Freud noted that unlike night dreams, that are sometimes confusing and inconsistent, it seems there is a “secondary correction” process in daydream fantasies which makes them clearer. Daydreaming is a type of intermediate state between consciousness (including the ability to think rationally and logically) and sleep. Brain areas connected to complex problem solving are activated while daydreaming.
Scott Barry Kaufman, professor of psychology at NYU, wrote that “these benefits include self-awareness, a creative incubation process, improvisation and evaluation, crystallization of memory, autobiographic planning, goal-oriented thinking, planning for the future, recall of deep personal memories, meditations about the meaning of events and experiences, simulation of others’ point of view, assessment of our emotional responses and those of others, moral explanations and reflective compassion… From this personal viewpoint, it is much easier to understand why people are attracted to daydreaming, and are prepared to devote to it almost 50% of their waking hours.” Daydreams are a way “to immerse in the stream of consciousness”, to think about the world and imagine its future,” says Kaufman. This improvised philosophy may even help us to find answers to the great existential questions. “It’s worth doubting the assertion that we always need to live the moment,” Kaufman says. “If we are always within the moment, we will miss important connections between our wandering thoughts and the external world. Creativity is hidden in the encounter between the external world and our inner world.”
In Shakespeare’s drama “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, in Peter Brock’s production (who interpreted the play according to critic Jan Kott in 1970), Nature is discovered in the forest, which represents cruelty and ugliness as they are also sometimes expressed in Reality itself. In Brock’s production many magical acts were also seen on stage, but not one of them couldn’t have been achieved through practice and concentration of human capabilities. Shakespeare knows that the dream is a significant element of actual reality, but its meaning is inaccessible through logic. Art, by contrast, is only a symbolic mediator that doesn’t appear to contain anything real, but is likely to serve only as an effective conduit for deciphering, for a clear view of a social condition, of feelings and difficulties and “other” ways to look at them, and eventually even to solve them.
In the works of Gilad Efrat, created with inspiration from the Negev’s tamarisk trees, an unclear situation exists, an acidic sensation, a state of blind spots of meditation on Nature. In his studio, a sort of fire exists that leaves the final image abstract while being formed. The process condenses the desire to attain a sense of locality tied to the landscape, the inability to do so and sharpening of yearning for belonging.
Maya Israel‘s paintings include melted figures in dissolving landscapes, inviting consciousness games. This is a kind of wakeful dissociation that is discernable by means of liminal states between consciousness and sub-consciousness, that are formed and unraveled simultaneously.
Ami Faytchevitz‘s works depict pastoral landscapes, a sort of intermediate expanse between worlds, a quiet, nearly neutral expanse that ‘tries to digest’ what occurred in the past and signal about what is yet to come.
In Alon Kedem‘s work spaces between reality and imagination exists. The figure that stands at the entrance, might symbolize the schizophrenic mind, fluctuating between the artist’s and the observer’s consciousness, in which proces destruction and creation, dismantling and construction, blindness and revelation exist simultaneously.
Pastoral landscapes emerge from the brush of Elyasaf Kowner, that describe a kind of longing for a pause in the tick-tock of capitalistic, apparently efficient time, and yearning for a different spatial time.
In Naomi Mendel‘s work, space expands from its three dimensions, and spreads over the painting as though seeking to fill another dimension, a spiritual one that is beyond the senses.
The work of Olaf Kühnemann seeks to dedicate a moment of observation, a moment void yet still crammed full.
Rakefet Viner Omer seeks to breech the covering of indifference, not by a direct response but rather through layers of intensive meaning created in her paintings, that challenge the apathetic injustices of reality.
Yham Hameiri, July 2015