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Yinka Shonibare, Susan Hiller and Zvi Goldstein Curate Israel Museum Exhibition
Anya Gallacio, "Preserve Beauty", 1991. Nine hundred red "Beauty" gerberas, pressed behind glass, 3 parts, each: 220 x 110 cm.

JERUSALEM.- The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, will celebrate the completion of its renewed campus with three special exhibitions curated by renowned contemporary artists and drawn from the Museum’s encyclopedic collections. Opening to the public on July 26, 2010, this three-part presentation, united under the title Artists’ Choices: Zvi Goldstein, Susan Hiller, Yinka Shonibare, will provide a fresh look from each artist’s perspective at the Museum’s permanent holdings in archaeology, the fine arts, and Jewish art and life. Unique in its scope and character, the project showcases masterpieces from the Museum’s collections and presents dialogues between the collections and the artists themselves, each of whom is also represented in the Museum's contemporary art collection. Four new works are also being created by Yinka Shonibare for his exhibition.

At the same time, the Museum will unveil its new permanent collection galleries with a series of rotating installations, including the premiere presentation of the Noel and Harriett Levine Collection of modern and contemporary photography, as well as exhibitions of archaeology, contemporary art, and prints and drawings. These exhibitions will be on view in the Museum’s three newly reinstalled and reconfigured collection wings: the Samuel and Saidye Bronfman Archaeology Wing, the Edmond and Lily Safra Fine Arts Wing, and the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Wing for Jewish Art and Life.

Artists’ Choices: Zvi Goldstein, Susan Hiller, Yinka Shonibare
Through January 2011, Harry and Bella Wexner Gallery

On view in the Museum’s centrally located temporary exhibition facilities in the new Harry and Bella Wexner Gallery, the three Artists Choices exhibitions are curated by contemporary artists Zvi Goldstein, Susan Hiller, and Yinka Shonibare. The curator-in-charge of the initiative is Suzanne Landau, Yulla and Jacques Lipchitz Chief Curator of the Arts and Landeau Family Curator of Contemporary Art.

Zvi Goldstein: Haunted by Objects
Romanian-born, Israeli artist Zvi Goldstein brings together over 600 objects—ranging from masterpieces from the collection to everyday objects from the Museum’s offices and storerooms—in a highly concentrated, floor-to-ceiling installation. Interspersed within this wunderkabinet-like display are sixty-two short text-poems from Goldstein’s book, Room #205, which was written following an experience he had hovering between day dream and hallucination in a Tel Aviv hotel room. Each poem is positioned within a non-hierarchical cluster of Museum treasures and found objects, raising questions about museology, curatorship, and art. Among the works chosen are: prehistoric goddesses, ancient Greek kraters, African masks, Japanese screens, and Dada ready-mades, as well as modern and contemporary paintings, sculptures and photographs by such artists as Manuel Alvarez Bravo, Marcel Duchamp, Harold Edgerton, Donald Judd, and André Kertész.

Susan Hiller: A Work in Progress
Drawing solely from the Museum’s holdings in modern and contemporary art, American-born, London-based artist Susan Hiller assembles approximately thirty-five works, all of which struck her as being “simultaneously poetic, political, melancholic, and optimistic.” Hiller’s journey through the Museum’s collections drew her to works dealing with fragmentation, text, mortality, typography, and art by women, among other subjects. Rather than revolving around her own work, the exhibition presents a personal selection that reflects the artist’s deepest interests. The presentation includes works by artists from around the world in a variety of mediums, among them: Walid Abu-Shakra, Christian Boltanski, Elisa and Andre Breton, Gaston Zvi Ickowicz, Anselm Kiefer, and Barbara Kruger.

Yinka Shonibare: Earth, Wind, Fire, and Water
Themes of cultural identity dominate the exhibition curated by Nigerian-born, London-based artist Yinka Shonibare, who has chosen over 300 works from the Museum’s collections to examine the ways in which cultures influence one another. Grouped according to the organizing principle of the four elements—earth, wind, fire, and water—the objects are linked by associative and aesthetic relationships, as well as by the artist’s signature focus on cultural hybrids. Shonibare is creating four new works especially for the exhibition, each representing one of the four elements and reflecting Shonibare’s emblematic style of dressing figures in Victorian-era garments made from colorful, African-identified batik textiles. The resulting installation, highlighting human commonalities above and beyond conflict, includes: prehistoric stone tools, Roman-period Egyptian figurines, and a South African ceremonial initiation and fertility doll, alongside works by Yasumasa Morimura, Pablo Picasso, Man Ray, Andres Serrano, and Ettore Sottsass.

The Israel Museum | Yinka Shonibare | Susan Hiller | Zvi Goldstein |

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