Contact Combat - Keren Shpilsher


May 26 - June 26, 2011

The exhibition 'Contact Combat' / 'Krav Maga' tells Keren Shpilsher's autobiographic story and unfolds the processes and choices she made in the past year. She addresses, or rather being addressed by topics pertaining to the history of art and the primal stories inherent to all of us. Those large-scale paintings deal with her life, ambitions and pains and the simultaneous fear of the known and the unknown. Krav Maga is not just a fighting technique; it also entails a desire for intimacy. Shpilsher is drawing upon rituals - pagan, familial and personal, borrowing from folk beliefs and other societies to symbolize oneself. Shpilsher beguiles and baffles us with double-meaning children's songs. Her familiar images of girls/dolls are complemented, unlike in previous works, by male figures. It seems as if the artist, as do the girls, who were perceived as passive are now coming back to their senses and regaining control. It appears as if the queen of the classroom has won the war and regained her throne, and is now able to stop fighting and involve herself with real life.

Keren Shpilsher Morag Tzepelewitz was born in 1977 in Kiron (Kiryat Ono). A graduate of the illustration department in Vital, she is a multidisciplinary visual artist who lives in Ramat Gan and creates in Tel-Aviv. Throughout the years, Shpilsher has developed her own unique artistic language which combines comics, modern and historic art, Judaica, consumerism, current events and folklore. Those thoughts are all chopped and processed in her exceptional mind and spread over the canvass to produce beautiful, enticing creations.

Shpilsher emerged into the public eye in 2002, garnering Mifal Hapayis' 'Promising Artist' award. Following the win she showcased a work, entitled 'Border Fence', in the 2003 'First Portrait' exhibition in the Tel-Aviv Museum's Helena Rubinstein Pavilion, a development of her graduation project 'I want to be a celebrity'.

Throughout her intensive career, Shpilsher initiated and participated in hundreds of group shows, small and large exhibitions in museums, galleries, pubs and in public space.

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