Eyal Segal | Falling into place
The exhibition of Eyal Segal (b. 1982) presents two video works. While each differs from the other in terms of subject, length and screening format, both have a shared poetic-aesthetic approach and roam visually through places far from the eye.
In Columba Riot the camera penetrates into an abandoned concrete structure populated by pigeons. A mysterious, even intimidating, atmosphere develops: footsteps on layer of droppings, feathers scatter through the air, birds flutter in front of a barred window, and a blurred figure passes through all these. There is no plot, although old ones spring to the viewer's mind (like Hitchcock's movie 'The Birds'), creating a surreal combination of seduction and horror, the symbolic and the concrete.
The setting is an agricultural-industrial enterprise - a feed-silo in an industrial zone in the Arava that was abandoned before it started operating. Nature took over the empty silo, and pigeons converted it into a present-day columbarium. Free and independent, the birds hover around the intruder who has infiltrated their living-space.
Time Container is a diptych – two parts presented as a single unit. This video is more narrative and documentary, though very painterly too. It was filmed during a visit to Ashdod port by the artist and his father, who had been a seaman as a young man. While one screen records the father's encounter with memories of the past and the contemporary world of ships, another screen displays tremendously powerful cranes moving slowly across the screen. The former sailor's wonderment at the sea's power and the huge vessels matches the photographer's admiration of the colourful cranes and geometrically arranged containers. Throughout the work there is a play of oppositions: between the monochromatic screen and the colour screen at the work's start and end; between a static abstract picture and teeming movement and a human story; between the open sea and the cargo quays.
The port is a point along a route of global movement - it connects past and present, father and son. It is also - as the film says of European ports - the country's backyard. The visual beauty pervading the film shifts it away from contemporary contexts and links it to traditional paintings of harbours, and modernism's machine aesthetics.
Eyal Segal was born in Arad, and lives and works in Tel Aviv. He is a graduate of Shenkar College of Design in the Visual Communication track (2010). During the past two years his paintings and video work were shown at group exhibitions, and this is his first solo exhibition.