Under construction
Photo: AP
Wall afloat
Photo: Shelly Federman

Beachfront exhibit mimics West Bank barrier

Artist Shelly Federman mounts unusual display on Tel Aviv beach –- grey polystyrene mattresses made to look like part of security fence

People arriving at Tel Aviv's beach Monday met an unexpected art display mimicking the West Bank security barrier.


Artist Shelly Federman's "fence" was made out of eight grey sea mattresses aimed at illustrating the complex realities of living in Israel.


The display is part of the ARTLV exhibit. Federman told Ynet that while the display may look like concrete, "It's made out of polystyrene and it floats.


"We placed it on the beach, just between Tel Aviv and Jaffa and it looks just like a section of the security fence. It's a little over seven feet high and 19 feet long.

The wall (Photo: Shelly Federman)


"We deliberately did it on the last day of the summer vacation. People could deposit their ID and get one of the mattresses for half an hour," she added. "We filmed the entire thing and it will be used in the exhibit."


According to Federman, beachgoers asked to be a part of the video. "People kept asking if the display was 'for us or against us' and kept feeling the mattresses, because they thought they were concrete."


But why mount such a display? "This is something I've wanted to do for a long time," she said. "It suits the summer and in a way, it continues another one I did for the Venice Biennale called 'Sea and Sun.'"


The display, she added, also comments on beachfront real estate, "Which is a wall in a way, since it blocks the sea. It also illustrates the absurd reality here, when all you want to do is relax on the beach, but you can't ignore what's going on around you.


"I deal with architectural violence, with the material itself –- with concrete and with the correlation between concrete and Israeli architecture, which to me, represents the Israeli aggressiveness. It this case –- the concrete has a military context."


פרסום ראשון: 09.01.09, 08:33
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