Friday, 27 March 2009
Work from the series Blackfield. I saw Ben-David’s show Wednesday at Galerie Albrecht in Berlin. The field of delicate, minature black trees and flowers was compelling enough, but walking past the work, every plant simultaneously exploded into a field of color (each piece has one black side and one intricately colored side).
“To embrace the world of Zadok Ben-David is to find oneself in a state of wonder. It is a world full of surprises where things are never quite what they seem – an illusory
world of ‘magical reality’.
The monumental ‘Blackfield’ installation, the centerpiece of this exhibition is made up of nearly five thousand flowers and plant sculptures no more than a few inches in height. The individual sculptures that make up Blackfield are black on the front and hand painted in colour on the reverse so as we circle it the work, gradually and miraculously, comes ablaze with colour. The eye is continually surprised and may not rest for any length of time in a single place. Even a blink, never mind physically moving and changing one’s perspective, confronts us with an entirely new viewpoint, both similar and utterly different to what one has encountered a few seconds before. The images are on a scale akin to Mughal miniatures and individually appear impossibly fragile. When confronted by such a massive installation it is hard not to rub one’s eyes in wonder. How is something so substantial, so big, made from elements that are so small – even ephemeral.
The Perspex Glass Boxes are random groupings of the flowers – segments of the overall installation, encompassing the larger installation in a smaller format. One cannot move around them so the colour is seen by a clever use of a mirror that makes the piece appear doubly as large and full of illusionist colour…”