Carlier | Gebauer

Dor Guez

13 Jun - 01 Aug 2015

Dor Guez, 2015, exhibition view at carlier | gebauer
13 June - 1 August 2015

carlier | gebauer is pleased to announce Dor Guez’s third solo exhibition with the gallery, opening Friday, 12 June from 6-9pm. A leading critical and artistic voice from the Middle East, Dor Guez interrogates both personal and official accounts of the past. Guez’s current exhibition with carlier | gebauer presents works from the first part of the artist’s ongoing project The Sick Man of Europe a five-part project that examines the military history of the Middle East through the lens of the lives and creative practices of individual soldiers. The first chapter of this project, entitled The Painter, was recently presented at ICA London and Villa Stuck Museum in Munich. Through films, archival source materials, photographs, and scanograms, The Painter tells the story of D. Guez, a Jewish Tunisian painter-turned-soldier who immigrated to Israel, and was conscripted into the army in 1973 to fight in the Yom Kippur War.

In his exhibition with carlier | gebauer, Guez will present a series of “scanograms” that relate to thirteen paintings made by D.Guez during the war. Guez utilizes the scanner as a form of camera. Each scanogram is made by layers of scanning, with each layer programmed to mirror a different aspect of the original painting: their surface textures, tears and creases, and evidence of handling. Guez then composes the layers into one image. This technique of multiscanning stresses the history of the material at hand; the prominent rips and tears border on abstraction and seem to almost take on a three-dimensional form. Curator Achim Bordchardt Hume elaborates on this technique in his text Drawing a Line:

“Scanography is a radiography technique in which a narrow beam of light is moved along the object under investigation to produce a life-size scan that helps diagnose various medical conditions. The objects exposed to this method here are the paintings of D. Guez. Rather than focusing on the paintings as such, Dor Guez uses their material flaws, their cracks and ruptures to speculate about much wider issues: the depth of trauma, both individual and collective, the challenges of identity, personal memory and official history, the force-field of Western colonialism and Israeli nation- building, and its impact on those most directly affected, not least Arab Israelis and Palestinians.”

Commonly attributed to Tsar Nicholas I of Russia in reference to the crumbling Ottoman Empire, the phrase “The Sick Man of Europe” has subsequently been used by theorists and pundits alike from the 19th century to the present to characterize the chronically unstable areas formerly under the purview of the Sultan’s domain. Guez appropriates this proverbial “Sick Man” by literally reconstructing him as a historic figure and fictional character—an individual and an allegory—who acts and is acted upon in the theater of war.

Dor Guez (b. Jerusalem) is an artist and scholar based in Jaffa. Guez, whose cultural heritage is Christian Palestinian and Jewish Tunisian, is the founder of the Christian Palestinian Archive (CPA) and the head of the Photography Department at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design Jerusalem. He has presented installments of The Sick Man of Europe at ICA London and CCA Tel Aviv. Forthcoming presentations of the project will take place at ICA Yerevan and MOCAD (Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit). He has had solo exhibitions at Mosaic Room (2013), The Rose Art Museum (2012), and KW Institute for Contemporary Art (2010). He has participated in numerous international group exhibitions and biennials such as the 12th Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul; 17th and 18th International Contemporary Art Festival, Videobrasil, Sao Paulo; the 3rd Moscow International Biennale, Moscow; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography; Maxxi Museum, Rome, and more.

Tags: Dor Guez