Carol Zemel - Imagining Return: The Provocative Art of Yael Bartana

Carol ZemelCarol Zemel, Professor of Art History, York University
Yael Bartana is one of Israel's cultural icons. Trained in the 1990s at Jerusalem's Bezalel Academy of Art and Design and New York's School of Visual Arts, she emerged in the 2000s as the defining voice of a new generation of Israeli photographers and video artists. Her practice uniquely combines documentary forms with visual poetry, resulting in defamiliarized and alternative histories of Israel and the diaspora. Bartana's signature work in this respect is her 'Polish Trilogy,' a trio of films that explores 19th- and 20th-century European-Jewish history and imagines a contemporary Jewish return to Poland. The work led to her selection as Poland's representative for the 2011 Venice Biennale, the first time a non-Pole was so honored. Carol Zemel, Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at York University (Canada) and the leading scholar of the Jewish visual avant-garde, explicates Bartana's extraordinary project in the context of global art, post-Holocaust memory, and the political and aesthetic debates on Zionism. 

Location: Third Floor, Levis Faculty Center

Date: October 11, 2012, 7:30 pm

Video of lecture here.