Illuminating Art in Kfar Saba

Last Thursday, Aprit 3rd, I had the honor and pleasure of being a part of a beautiful and moving event, which was the culmination of a 6-month long project called “Illuminating Art”.
The walls and easels displayed the art work of 14 local artists (with me in that count), and on stage we received a taste of the performing arts, in poetry, prose, and music.

My project, “The Tree of Life”, was displayed as a presentation of 11 photographs.
The explanation – in just a second…

Tree of Life | fine art photography by Smadar Barnea | E20-1402-9928

< The full presentation will be available soon… >

Kfar Saba & the local Yad LaBanim (organization for the commemoration of fallen soldiers & aid to their surviving families) initiated a project whereby local artists would meet bereaved families, and create original art following this acquaintance.
I rallied to the challenge, feeling it was in a worthy cause, and was not disappointed. On the contrary. I met a wonderful, interesting, optimistic couple, who live their lives to the full, in spite of the grief of losing their 20 year old son, Omer, a few years ago. Tali & Ichko Eshed are an inspiration, and I wanted my work to be about them and their inner strength.

It took me almost two months of fruitless deliberation, before an idea unfolded, supposedly “out of the blue”:
In our back yard, there’s a great big Eucalyptus tree. Twice it has been ravaged by storms, leaving a pitiful, broken stump; yet it persists and regenerates itself, growing green and strong against all odds. This was a metaphor for the Eshed family and an expression of the way they live, if ever there was one!
In order to reinforce the idea of joie de vivre (joy of life) and add another layer of meaning to the art, I photographed the tree through a glass sculpture of dancing figures. As a matter of fact, in most of the pictures, the focus is on these figures, and the tree is but a vague background.
The art created for this series is conceptual (where the idea is essential), but with an almost completely abstract result.
Of course, as in all my art, the pictures are pure photography, with no digital manipulation.

My thanks to Ariella Leiser, who so kindly lent me her sculpture “Dance of Glass”, to use in these photographs,
and a very warm embrace of thanks to Tali and Ichko, who allowed me into their home and their lives. 

So, till next time -

                      Best wishes, and -
                      Keep looking for the beauty and light that are everywhere.

                                                  - Smadar


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