Avner Singer and Mohamad Abo Rakia
Curator: Anat Lidror
Eternity, Temporariness, Timelessness, humanity and the human perception of time – these are the semantic fields at work here.
These are times when nature no longer marks for us the pace of time and cyclicality, but rather exists in its own right, mostly separate from us. As for us, we have put on glasses that separate time from nature, and other glasses as well – the glasses of nationality and religion, gender and tradition, all of them man-made.
This exhibition raises questions on the forces that lead humanity and on the path it chose to follow.
It brings up the longing for a time that used to exist in a pre-human world, or in the early days of humankind – nature time. A time that is not subject to progress, a time of seasons and cycles, a time of patience, tens of thousands of years when nature was benevolent to people, providing them with food and sources of water, with shelter and growth.
But humans chose the principle of control: Control over nature, over time and its management, and control over each other. We live with the constant feeling of "no time": our fast paced, busy lives have deviated from natural time and left us with screen time, with fragmented time broken into Jewish and Moslem, Christian and Buddhist time; with the race of the clock, confined into hours and minutes. We have been left with a sense of lost time, disconnected, alienated.
Mohamad Abo Rakia and Avner Singer, masters of clay, have been walking the same path for over twenty years. For the first time they are now cooperating in a joint exhibition where they wish to look up from the material and ask: does the full meaning of time include an eternal, spiritual dimension beyond it?
Does this space belong exclusively to religion? What is the place of secular spirituality in our lives? What is the place of spirituality that moves beyond the boundaries of religion and even of secularism? Why do we keep staring at the ground? Have we forgotten our spiritual dimension? How is this linked to the feeling that harmony is no longer part of our everyday existence?
The will to change the rules of the game, even happily so, through bright colors, to refresh our automatic system, to undermine existing perceptions of time – is conveyed through new possibilities of perceiving and expressing time. In their work the artists explore different intervals, a subjective perception of time, a ringing time – a time connected to sound, with all its depth, width, fullness.
The bell and prayer wheels, eternity, silence and sound come from another world, a supreme world of spirit, harmonious, outside of time. It is a place that combines all that is human and beyond into one complete whole.
Mohamad and Avner present shapes and spaces of possibilities for the connection between earth and sky, for the perception of beauty and the movement of spirit and time, maybe even for the eternal.
In his piece "To Have and Have not" Avner Singer presents cycles of impossible time. His attempts to create a piece within a framework of 24 hours, a period that challenges the qualities of clay, yielded fragments that encompass the clay's notion of time and its resistance.
Mohamad Abo Rakia has always created bells. For him, their shape, sound and space express a precise convergence. They also express his silence, his difficulty to speak. His silence resounds in spoken language, but in his art it is rich, harmonious and fluent, a truly poetic language.
In their work, both artists treat the surface, through prints and textures. They pause to observe the cracks, the ruptures and the scrapings, as they wonder and try to figure out one more layer in the relationship between man, matter and that big, elusive entity, which is Time.
When will the bells toll? This is a call for a deep awakening.
Anat Lidror, Curator