Marcuse, Pontormo and me (2013-2022)

“Marcuse, Pontormo and Me” it is a series which creates a dialogue with two artists and their art works. One, the forgotten Jewish-German artist, Elie Hirsch Marcuse (1817-1902), and the other the Italian mannerist painter, Jacopo da Pontormo (1494-1557). The original works are broken up to fragments, which are then closely studied as form ,material, color, and conceptual dialog.

In the case of the painter Elie Marcuse the focus is on the his work “The Death of King Saul” (1848), an epic painting which arrived a few years ago after a long journey from Europe to the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. The painting depicting the last moments of the lives of King Saul, his sons and his armor-bearer, in the fight against the Philistines on the Mount Gilboa . The painting is dismantled as a sort of puzzle and reveals Marcuse’s sensual, aesthetic and dramatic components.

The case of the Italian mannerist painter Pontormo is in a way similar. There is a process of dismantling his work and the human landscape into individuals, isolating them from their original group surroundings. The main focus is on Pontormo’s works from the Caponni Chapel in Florence among them the famous “Deposition from the Cross”.

The creation of Pontormo and Marcuse comes from a world and tradition that are very different from the local Israeli one. In Imaginary bridges are built between the old traditions and their richness of style and the locally reduced Jewish-Israeli Art.

The conceptual connection between Marcuse’s Death of King Saul the death of Jesus and Pontormo’s works, though it is a subjective one and carries individual interests, bears inside it in the both cases the image of the victim the Christian and the Jewish that his divine mission dictates his life and destiny.

The works are made in mix media technique on different sizes and shapes of plywood. The strong color that characterizes some of them echo the surreal colors of the Italian mannerist painters and gets some pop art characters.