Art in Tel-Aviv

Solo exhibition by Jay L / Butterflies Over Tel Aviv 2/6-23/6, Gal On Gallery. Curator: Daniela Talmor

In the eyes of Jay L, the city, its buildings and its spaces, are first and foremost a place for people. Spending time in the city enables rushed encounters with strangers that entice him to devise a new story for them through the camera.

In his wanderings through cities in the world, he seeks our strangers that attract his attention, and shoots them in the natural flow of daily life. His photographs are populated with anonymous passersby, especially women, immersed in the routines of their private worlds, and unaware of the artist's camera.
Jay L wanders around cities as a curious visitor, but his camera does not make him a tourist. Although most of the still photographs in the exhibition were shot in foreign cities, he said that for him "every city is Tel Aviv, like every person photographed is me. Just like I search for myself in the photographs, I search for my place wherever I am". His photographs of people do not attempt to reflect reality, and the subjects that do not notice him create a sense of fictitious photographs, a type of memory – real or false – that engages the photographer and is reflected in the photographed object.

The exhibition concludes with a hypnotic video film created by Jay L "Butterflies Over Tel Aviv", which gave the entire exhibition its name. This name references the name of the fascinating film by renowned director Wim Wenders "Angels Over Berlin" (Wings of Desire), with angels watching humans and hearing their thoughts. The film was shot during the summer of 2011, during the social protests and demonstrations in Tel Aviv. In this film also, the artist's camera focuses on anonymous people, and exposes to viewers their most secret thoughts – exposure that turns them into heroes of a great drama.

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