Ofek 1, 2004, paper cuttings and glue, 235 x 575 cm, courtesy of the artist
Ben Ben Ron
Ben Ben Ron's work Ofek 1 addresses the two poles of this exhibition: on the one hand, it was composed using a "low," decorative and childlike technique that involves cutting and pasting thousands of paper shreds; on the other hand, it involves "high" themes and poignant social criticism. Referring to the apocalyptic scene featured in this work, the artist recalled the images etched into collective consciousness during the attack on the Twin Towers. ("The black pealing flesh of the night resembles the thousands of pieces of office paper that fluttered through the air during the collapse of the towers"). The name of this work relates to the name of the Israeli satellite "Ofek 1," a symbol of Israel's advanced technological power; it thus charges the nocturnal scene with additional meanings, related to a future annihilation. This work concludes a four-year period during which Ben Ron created works composed of layers of colorful paper shreds. The violent and morose narratives in these works stand out in contrast to the technique, which alludes to summer camp handicraft projects or occupational therapy sessions.
Ben Ron's carpet paintings, which were created on recycled paper in India, were inspired by the cheap, colorful rugs that fill local markets. In contrast to his earlier works, here the "high" act of painting modestly imitates the rugs' simple weave; it seems to be drawing attention to the beauty inherent in small, unpretentious details, created by rural artisans with no technological pretensions.
Born in Haifa, 1971; lives and works in Tel Aviv, India and England