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Imagining Return: The Provocative Art of Yael Bartana

Event Type
The Program in Jewish Culture and Society
Levis Faculty Center
Oct 11, 2012   7:30 pm  
Carol Zemel
Originating Calendar
Program in Jewish Culture and Society Events

Yael Bartana is one of Israel's cultural icons. Trained in the 1990s at Jerusalem's Bezalel Academy of Art and Design and New York's School of Visual Arts, she emerged in the 2000s as the defining voice of a new generation of Israeli photographers and video artists. Her practice uniquely combines documentary forms with visual poetry, resulting in defamiliarized and alternative histories of Israel and the disapora. Bartana's signature work in this respect is her 'Polish Trilogy,' a trio of films that explores 19th- and 20th-century European-Jewish history and imagines a contemporary Jewish return to Poland. The work led to her selection as Poland's representative for the 2011 Venice Biennale, the first time a non-Pole was so honored. Carol Zemel, Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at York University (Canada) and the leading scholar of the Jewish visual avant-garde, will explicate Bartana's extraordinary project in the context of global art, post-Holocaust memory, and the political and aesthetic debates on Zionism.

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