2021, Hacubia, Jerusalem
The shared dual exhibition ‘Aquarium’ brings together the work of artists Doron Oved and Noa Sheizaf, in a photography and video-based installation, the product of a continuous dialogue between the two.
Sheizaf and Oved, wandering-photographers, search for pieces of reality indicative of life in still and empty places, proof of human activity that took place and was interrupted. Like detectives, they gather evidence through the lens of the camera, evidence that serve as pieces of a puzzle that make up an alternative world, an anonymous space where the sense of time is deceiving – the past seems futuristic, the memories are from the present.
Oved wanders in urban districts, hunting for moments of dim glow with surreal-cinematic qualities within the banal, daily, and dirty. Sheizaf, a marine archaeologist, is drawn to the water spaces and the flooded world dwelling beneath them, recognizing in them a primordial sphere threatening to return in the far distant future.
The world is a closed and supervised circuit: the photographer is being photographed; the observer is being observed. The fantasy of freedom is served to us in an aesthetic and flat manner. Like fish in an aquarium, we make do with illusioned visions of depth and space, caged in our narrow and clearly defined world.
Behind the glass, living bodies also seem like a still, flat photo. The glass prevents any kind of touching, smelling, tasting, feeling, hearing. It protects both the observer and the observed. The same is true for the person holding the camera – always hiding behind the lens. Far too sensitive, the lens separates the photographer from the world. The photographer throws small nets towards reality, trying to capture something of it. An illusive, shiny particle, fluttering in his hands.