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Israel’s history can be understood through its vast archaeological heritage. Its past exists not only in the written word but also in its land, in the architecture and ruins, in the stones themselves. Each civilization overwrites another, layer upon layer – a sophisticated palimpsest. A single frame can expose the sediment of thousands of years.
The recycling of spaces, from one empire to the next, shows how each sought to conquer and rule the land, all with a similar outcome: eventual failure. Kremer shows the vestiges of this complex multicultural saga, testimonies unearthed from the past that show a different perspective. It is landscape as a place of amnesia and erasure, for Israel is a strategic site where the past has been buried and history veiled by natural beauty.
Kremer’s Israel exists beyond the media headlines and tourist hotspots: it is landscape as cultural force, an instrument in the construction of national and social identity. For Kremer, it is a provocation to critical debate about a country where different perspectives existed, and continue to exist, and where new possibilities can be reflected upon.
Born in 1974 and raised in Israel, Shai Kremer currently lives in Tel Aviv and New York. He has exhibited widely internationally: Tate Modern, London; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; SF MoMA, San Francisco; Chicago Museum of Contemporary Photography; Tel Aviv Museum of Art; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; the Red Cross Red Crescent Museum, Geneva; Guangzhou Photo Biennale, China; Omotesando Gallery, Tokyo; Vittoriano Art Museum, Rome; PHotoEspaña, Madrid. His work is held by several major museum collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; SF MoMA, San Francisco; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.
Cloth-bound hardback, 136 pages
50 colour photos, 245mm x 305mm