June 18th – July 31st 2021
Tsibi Geva , 20-21, June 2021
In the exhibition 20-21, Tsibi Geva is presenting a selection of artworks that derive from an extensive body of work he has created over the past 12 months.
Throughout last year, Geva showcased various large, site-specific installations in institutions such as the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art (Where I’m Coming From) and the Israel Museum (Blinds). He also displayed his paintings in a show at New York’s Albertz Benda gallery.
During this tumultuous year, at the very peak of COVID-19, Geva returned his focus to his painting research, descending into deep layers of his long-enduring artistic project.
The works on view here are the result of a long journey of disassembly and reconstruction of the rich iconography as well as the formal and structural elements characteristic of Geva’s work over the years.
Geva’s oeuvre is polyphonic in nature; he simultaneously develops his paintings while using readymade, abandoned objects and cultivating site-specific installations, which correspond with architectural spaces. These different channels of creation respond to one another, thus developing new situations and contexts from which the work and the environment it is placed in can be reinterpreted.
In his current project, Geva takes these channels of creation one step farther. The new works synthesize two previous bodies of work: One of them is Geva’s paintings of terrazzo floor tiles, dating from the 1990s to present day; the other body of work highlights his preoccupation with and manipulation of discarded objects he finds on the street.
The new paintings have the quality of collages, appearing like patchworks in which Geva edited and re-edited his creative grammar. Taking apart, putting together, turning over and creating combinations, Geva embarks with these works on a reflexive process of self-investigation, probing a language and a world.
In some of the works Geva adds to the painting parts of older paintings. These remnants have been cropped out of previous works and planted inside the new ones. The migrant elements connect to the act of painting but also disrupt it continuously, opening up new and surprising options.
Thereby, Geva’s works reveal a process that creates rhizomatic painting mutations, charts, abstractions and adaptations of personal precedents. Hidden in most works are also references to abstract traditions. These winks at the past always carry with them the memory and the energetic luggage of the imagery and the substantial, of a perplexed world at the very cusp of collapse.