Curated by Mor Reshef Sivan
11th October – 29th November 2018
Omer Tiroche Gallery is proud to present Gilded Shadows, a solo exhibition by Ofek Eliya curated by Mor Reshef Sivan. This exhibition captures the raw vulnerability that characterises Eliya’s works; works that reflect an almost meditative intent to overcome internal struggle. On a quest for self-discovery and self-mastery, Eliya is inspired by Baroque and Renaissance sacred art; what he wishes to sacralise however are not religious icons, but rather the dark side of the human condition.
Eliya’s intent is to firmly confront his inner demons and by memorialising and expressing his struggles in his art, he appropriates a status of sanctity for our inner demons, placing them in the foreground, above all and in front of all. Eliya’s belief is that no emotion should be concealed or repressed as all equally contribute to make us who we are. To an extent, the exhibition is autobiographical, as this series of works document the artist’s deeply personal struggles.
Eliya’s commitment to voicing the unspoken is undoubtedly symbolised by his ease in depicting desolate dark themes. However, he also incorporates an element of playfulness into his work by inserting a recurring motif of a small, bright, colorful bee. The bee courses the background of the composition and is symbolic of an omnipresent hum, lingering in one’s ears and demanding to be acknowledged.
Each work is directly inspired by emotionally powerful experiences in the artist’s life; experiences, which Eliya explains, demanded to be resolved through expression. The works take on a cathartic function, allowing Eliya to both express and overcome his trauma. He does not shy away from dealing with what is usually denied and repressed, but rather embraces and confronts it, making it tangible and intelligible. Through art, Eliya is able to make previously unspeakable and disruptive emotions translatable, enclosing them into organic and soulful paintings.
Ofek Eliya was born in 1997 and grew up in Kfar Yona, into a creative family. Today he lives and works in a studio in his family home. Eliya is an autodidact, who has been painting from an early age. His works have been exhibited at the Water Institute in Givatayim, and this is his first solo exhibition.