Lisson Gallery

Miri Segal: Capital Hill

30 March – 24 April 2004

Miri Segal: Capital Hill

Lisson Gallery is pleased to announce its first solo exhibition by Israeli artist Miri Segal opening at Lisson New Space on March 30. This will be her first solo exhibition in the UK and Europe.

Using video projection Miri Segal creates sensual, complex and immersive works, which, through illusion, challenge the empiricism of touch and sight.

In UnUn (too easy to ease), 1999, Segal projects a small video image of the sea, reminiscent of a picture hanging on the wall. The horizon is at eye level and the sound of the sea, along with a barely perceptible layer of music can be heard. Every few minutes, without warning, the sea surges forward advancing across the space toward the viewer consuming the walls and the floor on a realistic scale before reaching the viewers feet, whereby it recedes again after one second. The sudden motion of the approaching wave is accompanied by a burst of laughter. Here, Segal plays with a reversal of impact. Whereas it is expected that the viewer ideally opens up to the beauty of a work of art, this work literally opens up to the viewer. Touching and not touching, seeing and not quite seeing, are concepts which run through many of Segal’s works. It is often the viewer, sometimes the artist, who become both subject and object of the touch and of the gaze.

Like most of her installations, Still life in Cucumber Season 2003 is highly lyrical. In this work the viewer enters a small room where one of the walls contains a window-shaped aperture. Opposite the “window” hangs a small mirror reflecting the viewer’s face. The film begins with a shot of a girl leaning against a wall, caressing herself, waiting. The viewer’s reflected image merges with the girl’s screened image, creating the illusion of contact between film and viewer. Tension mounts, triggered by the eroticism of the ‘untouching’ touch and the viewer’s embarrassment at the possibility of being caught in so intimate an act by other observers.

Alongside these works, Segal produces small-scale sculptural pieces. In Capital Hill no. 1 & no. 2, 2004, two identical piles of one-pound coins are displayed. The only difference between the two is their price: the cost of one pile is half its monetary value, the cost of the other is two times its monetary value.

Within a technological alienated medium, Miri Segal manages to make emotional, sensual and erotic art that is at once integrated yet removed from the viewer.

Segal lives and works in Tel-Aviv. She has a Ph.D in mathematics from Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. Recent solo exhibitions include “Interfaces”, The Nathan Gottesdiener Foundation Israeli Art Prize, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Tel Aviv, 2002, “Circular Acts” P.S.1 center of contemporary art, NY, NY, 2001, Dvir

Gallery, Tel Aviv, 1999. Group exhibitions include “Affirmative Action”, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, 2003, “Thin Skin” ICI, AXA Gallery, NY, NY., travelling throughout USA and Europe, 2002. Forthcoming exhibitions in 2004 include group show “Re-Search”, List, MIT Cambridge, MA. USA, “Love is in the air”, Zman Le’omanut, Tel Aviv and a solo exhibition at Dvir Gallery, Tel Aviv. 

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