Assaf Gruber. The Anonymity of the Night
ms1, Więckowskiego 36 St.; exhibition hall on the ground floor
2 October 2015 – 29 November 2015
Curator: Jarosław Lubiak
In the project The Anonymity of the Night Assaf Zeev Gruber touches upon the issues of identity and memory, investigates the relationship between guilt and compensation avoiding, however, in principle considering them in the context of good and evil. The Artist focuses on the ambiguity of human actions and behaviours. The ambiguity, which results from historical, political, and cultural complexities, permeates decisions of individual people.
Gruber demonstrates these complex relationships using four video films and creating an impression of presenting excerpts from feature films. Each of them is a monologue or rather an allegorical monodrama that tells a story of core experiences in life or the main character’s plans that are consequences of such experiences.
The prototype of the character from the first video („The Anonymity of the Nigth”) – a mysterious lawyer – is a living person, an Israeli attorney at law experienced in the most controversial criminal cases. The Artists concentrates on revealing his personality. The protagonist of the second footage („Citizen in the Making”) is an Israeli guy in his twenties, who is trying to regain his corporal identity through the act of circumcision.
The main character of „The Guard Room” is Femka – a beginning artist who also works as a nurse at the plastic surgery clinic. Her decision to enter the world of visual arts is taken after an accidental visit to the Old Masters’ Gallery. The art that she has been involved into has got a very contemporary dimension to it.
On the last screen („The Right”) we see an elderly lady who works as a security guard in the Old Masters Picture Gallery at the Dresdner Zwinger. As a German when she was a child she was forced to leave Poland and today she is applying for the job of a security guard for the exhibition of modern works of art from the collection of the Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź – principally because she likes the aesthetics of the avant-garde artworks presented there. The video touches on the issue of symbolic working-through historical entanglements.
Assaf Gruber’s tetralogy presented as a parable of the fate of individual protagonists shows ways of making sense to individual human existence with respect to four the following categories: social recognition, belonging to a community, social change and the right to return. Together with video works the exhibition will show sculptures and objects that introduce us into playing with film fiction.
Assaf Zeev Gruber – born in 1980 in Israel, currently lives and works in Berlin. A graduate of the Higher Institute of Fine Arts in Ghent (Belgium). He took part in many group and solo exhibitions in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, and Poland. The exhibition in Muzeum Sztuki is his first individual exhibition in Poland.