Yossi Zur: Views from the Real World

12 - 25 November 2011

For his solo exhibition Views From the Real World, photographer Yossi Zur has assembled a collection of images that explore a seemingly boundless borderland between physicality and perception.  The twenty-odd works in the show take as their subject matter the commonplace evidence of physical objects and the space they inhabit to the end of manufacturing phantasmic, ethereal landscapes out of light, shadow, scrim and reflection.   Like abstract paintings crafted from light itself, Zur's photographs seem to dart, dance and ricochet as the eye struggles to find purchase within a pulsing world of evanescing fields and forms. 


Although created using the humblest of everyday materials, Zur's pictorial setups reference subject matter at the outer edges of human experience and perception.   Deserts, stars and particle bursts intermingle with protoplasmic grids and dark horizons to immerse the viewer in a continuous sequence of worlds so tenuously poised that they spontaneously negate themselves just as they begin to materialize.  In one sense, these "views from the real world" reference an objective vantage point behind the camera/in front of the print looking out into a constantly shifting set of fantasy worlds, yet the ambiguously worded title also leaves open the exact opposite possibility--namely, that the only "real world" to be found is on the other side of the camera (its subject, caught in the lens) while the fantasy occurs in the mind's eye as a function of the associative impulses of the viewer.  Zur thusly questions the sequence and causality of the very cues and clues we use to place ourselves in physical space, the upshot of which is a wryly philosophical meditation on materiality as mediated through our various cognitive screens, lenses, frames and apertures.


About the Artist


Born on a Kibbutz in Israel in 1963. He began painting at age of thirteen, and attended the "Avni Institute of Fine Arts" in Tel-Aviv, Israel from 1982 until 1984 when he left to fulfill his mandatory military service requirement in the Israeli armed forces.  He moved to New York in 1995 at which point his aesthetic focus shifted to photography.  His work was featured in Altered States, a group show curated by the artist Jon-Paul Villegas at 138 Ludlow Street Apartment (June 2009), It's Not From Here, a solo exhibition at the Shala Yoga House (September 2010), baker does zen, a solo exhibition at Christopher Henry Gallery (May 2010).  He lives and works in the Lower East Side of Manhattan.