This large-scale solo show by leading contemporary Israeli painter Gilad Efrat explores the evolution of his unique painting style and approach, typified by “digging” into layers of paint.
Starting with his earliest works, which focus on local and politically significant archeological sites, the exhibition moves to his later depictions of barren deserts, swamps, and moonscapes, before showcasing his most recent abstract paintings. Of special focus in the exhibition are Efrat’s large-scale close-up portraits of apes from the Houston Zoo, which depict primates that he painted in the Zoo as a recreational activity. Unable to create figurative depictions, the apes created abstract works that were sold by the Zoo.
These poignant portraits mark a significant moment in Efrat’s transition to abstraction. They address the tension between the figurative and the abstract, and the cerebral and the intuitive – major issues in modern and contemporary art in general, and in painting specifically.