Click to search the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library Skip Navigation

Facts on the Ground | Shimon Attie, Norman Kleeblatt, Maya Benton | An Artist Dialogue Series

Share

FREE - Auditorium doors open at 5:30 p.m.

Internationally renowned visual artist Shimon Attie discusses his evocative new monograph and concurrent exhibition, Facts on the Ground, with Norman Kleeblatt, Chief Curator, The Jewish Museum, New York, and Maya Benton, Curator at the International Center of Photography.

LAND LORD, Two on-location custom made light boxes, Looking onto Israeli settlement Har Homa   from Palestinian Village Umm Tuba, annexed by Israel in 1967, 2014, Digital C print,   27X40/48X72 inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY
LAND LORD, Two on-location custom made light boxes, Looking onto Israeli settlement
Har Homa from Palestinian Village Umm Tuba, annexed by Israel in 1967,
2014, Digital C print, 27X40 / 48X72inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY

For Facts on the Ground, Attie created thirty dramatic and enigmatic site-specific installations across Israel and Palestine. He fashioned and installed custom-made light boxes featuring illuminated texts at each site, the works specifically staged in-order-to-be-photographed. Rich with ambiguity, the phrases resist interpretation, while pointing to some of the psychological, cultural, and political anxieties at stake in present day Israel and Palestine. 

Kleeblatt, Benton and Attie explore the role of poetic ambiguity in his work with over-mediated sites and charged subject matter. They also converse about the physical aspects of language, image, and landscape in relation to the more conceptual qualities of space, time and identity. Time permitting; Attie discusses his current project, still in production, The Leave-Taking, created with Syrian refugees, recently arrived in Europe.

Attie’s exhibition Facts on the Ground  is on view at Jack Shainman Gallery in Chelsea from April 28 to June 4, 2016.

Cover of Shimon Attie's book Facts on the Ground
Cover of Shimon Attie's book Facts on the Ground

The art monograph Facts on the Ground features Shimon Attie’s recent body of work created in Israel and Palestine. The book includes 22 full-page color plates, with an introduction by Mieke Bal, an essay by art historian Gannit Ankori and architect/artist Samir Srouji, and a poem by Maureen N. McLane.

Copies of Facts on the Ground (Nazraeli Press, 2016) are available for purchase and signing at the end of the event.

Shimon Attie is an internationally renowned visual artist, whose work spans photography, video, site-specific installations, public projects, and new media. Attie's projects allow us to reflect on the relationship between place, memory and identity.  Attie's work has been exhibited and collected by numerous museums internationally, including New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Centre Pompidou, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, and the Miami Art Museum, among many others. In addition, he has received numerous visual artist fellowships and awards, including a Guggenheim, The Rome Prize, a Radcliffe Institute fellowship from Harvard University, and the Lee Krasner Lifetime Achievement Award. Several books have been published on Attie's prior work, which has also been the subject of numerous films, which have aired on PBS, BBC, and ARD. Since receiving his MFA in 1991, Shimon Attie has realized approximately 25 projects in ten countries around the world.

A DIFFERENT POSSESSION, Three on-location custom made light boxes, Looking onto Palestinian   Village Issawiyah, annexed by Israel in 1967, from Mount Scopus, Jerusalem, 2014, Digital C   print, 27X40/40X60 inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman
A DIFFERENT POSSESSION, Three on-location custom made light boxes, Looking onto Palestinian 
Village Issawiyah, annexed by Israel in 1967, from Mount Scopus, Jerusalem, 2014,
Digital C print, 27X40 / 40X60 inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY

Maya Benton is a curator at the International Center of Photography in New York, where she has worked since 2007. Her exhibition, Roman Vishniac Rediscovered, continues to travel internationally and was heralded as a “revelation” by The New Yorker, ArtNEWS, Time, and The Economist. Maya has curated numerous traveling exhibitions and is a frequent contributor to magazines and catalogs, addressing themes of modern and contemporary photography, Israeli art and Jewish visual and material culture. She is a graduate of Brown University, Harvard University and the Courtauld Institute of Art in London. She is currently working on an exhibition of photographer Gillian Laub’s contemporary images of segregated proms and race based violence in the American South, a well as an exhibition of photographs by the American Conceptual artist, Sol LeWitt.

SOMETHING ABNORMAL, Two on-location custom made light boxes, Lifta (former Palestinian   village bombed and evacuated during 1948 War), 2014, Digital C print, 27X40/40X60 inches, Shimon   Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY
SOMETHING ABNORMAL, Two on-location custom made light boxes,
Lifta (former Palestinian  village bombed and evacuated during 1948 War),
2014, Digital C print, 27X40 / 40X60 inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY

Norman L. Kleeblatt, Susan and Elihu Rose Chief Curator of The Jewish Museum in New York, is renowned for his well-crafted and broad ranging exhibitions.  His 2008 award-winning show for The Jewish Museum, Action/Abstraction: Pollock, De Kooning, and American Art, 1940-1976 is an example of his rethinking of art and cultural history as well as exhibition models. His curatorial achievements range from The Dreyfus Affair: Art, Truth and Justice (1987); and Too Jewish? Challenging Traditional Identities (1996); to John Singer Sargent: Portraits of the Wertheimer Family (2000); and An Expressionist in Paris: The Paintings of Chaim Soutine (1998) with Kenneth Silver. In 2014 he organized Mel Bochner: Strong Language and co-curated the exhibition From the Margins: Lee Krasner | Norman Lewis, 1945-1952 . Norman Kleeblatt's articles have appeared in Artforum, Art in America, The Art Journal, and Art News. He was a recipient of grants from the Getty Research Institute, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Rockefeller Foundation, and currently serves on the boards of both the Vera List Center for Art and Politics of the New School and the U.S. section of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA).

Do unto others before, Laser cut mirrored letters, Ruins of former Mosque attacked and   damaged  by rioting Israelis during second Palestinian Intifada, Tel Aviv, 2014, Digital C   print, 27X40/40X60, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY
Do unto others before, Laser cut mirrored letters, Ruins of former Mosque attacked and 
damaged  by rioting Israelis during second Palestinian Intifada, Tel Aviv,
2014, Digital C print, 27X40 / 40X60 inches, Shimon Attie, courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, NY

Initiated and organized by Arezoo Moseni in 2004, Artist Dialogues Series provide an open forum for understanding and appreciation of contemporary art. Artists are paired with critics, curators, gallerists, writers or other artists to converse about art and the potential of exploring new ideas. 

Events at The New York Public Library may be photographed or recorded. By attending these events, you consent to the use of your image and voice by the Library for all purposes.