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Asaf Ben Zvi

Between, Israel, 2008

Sugar lift, spit bite,
160X60 cm

Courtesy of The Gottesman Etching Center, Kibbutz Cabri

The key word “between”, set at the very heart of the work by Asaf Ben Zvi, generates a delicate balance, a critical point in the process of creating the work and its meanings.  The use the artist makes of aqua tint generates, on the one hand, a sense of disintegration, and on the other, of consolidation, so that it is difficult to ascertain whether it is directed at completion of the work or its destruction.

At the level of meaning, the word “between” may be seen as an element of time – one that assumes the past and is directed towards the future. The movement between two individuals or between two worlds confronts us with ourselves, and, simultaneously, with the figure of the “double” (vide discussion of the psychic dimensions of the “double” motif in Sigmund Freud’s essay “The Uncanny " featuring in the exhibition catalogue).

The psychic element implied by the image prompts a forceful conflict between similar images which regard one another without being able to evade one another. They are identical, yet separate. Against the setting of that separateness, which seems familiar yet uncontainable, there come about the clashes of the individual, but also historical clashes, between groups whose distinctiveness from one another frequently overshadows their measure of similarity