Here, his photographic work also becomes an interrogation of different narrative modes. His photos become visual ellipses, their figurative quality almost vanishing into abstraction.
Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac is pleased to present a monographic exhibition, at the Pantin space, of works by Israeli artist Amos Gitai.
For several years Gitai has used various modes of artistic expression, ranging across films, theater, installations and photography. This has led to more and more frequent invitations from many museums and galleries including MoMA, Reina Sofia, and the Centre Pompidou. While Gitai's films have made him famous as an artist worldwide, his photography, which has only recently come to attention, is now beginning to be widely appreciated.
His favourite themes, history and all it entails and people's destiny in the face of potentially overwhelming odds, are the subjects of a formal and thematic quest which he pursues relentlessly. Here, his photographic work also becomes an interrogation of different narrative modes. His photos become visual ellipses, their figurative quality almost vanishing into abstraction.
In the exhibition, Army Day Horizontal. Army Day Vertical Amos Gitai presents two Super 8 films Before & After and Black & White along with a series of previously unseen photographs.
Before & After is an experimental film shot in 1973 during the Yom Kippur war. In the film Gitai revisited an event that occurred when he was only 23 years old, namely a helicopter crash from which he miraculously escaped with his life. It was after that that he decided to make films. The Super 8 features the military jacket Gitai was wearing at the time of the accident; and it becomes the central 'character' of the film.
With the series of new photographs displayed here, Amos Gitai continues his work of decoding and conducting a post-mortem on that instant when experience of what has happened turns into personal memory. It is a process in which the subject disappears; what appears in its place is the extreme density of thick, granular, matter translating the stigmata of time and resulting in something with a painterly aspect. What artistic modes can give a proper account of that event, that trauma? What traces did it leave in the memory – a few weeks after, or forty years after? The artist's quest is nourished reciprocally and simultaneously by both film and photography.
In parallel with the exhibition at Pantin, the exhibition Amos Gitai, architecte de la mémoire along with a retrospective of his films will be presented at the Cinémathèque française (Paris) from 26 February to 6 July 2014. On this occasion, the book Amos Gitai, architecte de la mémoire has been co-published by Gallimard and the Cinémathèque.
From 5 February 2014 to 19 May 2014, the Reina Sofia Museum (Madrid) presents the exhibition The biographies of Amos Gitai which takes the form of an intellectual biography of the artist and his many modes of expression.
From September 2014 to January 2015, there is an exhibition devoted to the work of Amos Gitai at the Musée de l’Elysée (Lausanne).