03.03. - 30.03. 2023
single-channel video, 6 min, 16:9
Persons Projects’ latest Image to Image exhibition explores the conflicted relationship between humans and nature. For centuries, humanity has explored, exploited, destroyed, or modified their natural habitats according to their will. Vast land modification is being made to ecstatically please the eye or serve us for pure leisure or entertainment purposes. The ostensible superiority of humankind over nature has not only led to irreparable damage to ecosystems but also in some ways to an unnatural detachment. Assaf Gruber explores this shift in his video work Binding (2011).
In this film, the camera follows a man and his young son wandering off naked in a green landscape without any goal or purpose. Seemingly lost and completely detached from their surroundings, the viewer realizes that the artificial-looking landscape is in fact a golf course – an unnatural, ‘cultivated’ space of sportive leisure. Thus, the surreal setting stands in direct contrast to the naked bodies of father and son – the most natural state of the human body. The basic actions of these personae – walking, kneeling, crying, and embracing – seem on one hand as part of a religious ceremony and on the other like a strange modern sculptural performance with no audience within the artificial landscape: The golf course of Caesara. This shooting location was a deliberate choice of the artist as it is a historical piece of land that has now been transformed into a leisure site for the richest inhabitants of Israel.