Nira Pereg: All of This Can Be Reconstructed Elsewhere

14.02.2013 - 10.04.2013

The CCA is proud to present All of This Can Be Reconstructed Elsewhere, a solo exhibition by Nira Pereg featuring four new video installations, never before seen in Israel:

Avraham Avraham (2012) is a video that documents religious Jews evacuating their compound in the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. When the compound doors open, religious Muslims enter the compound and begin to unpack their belongings, including laying down prayer rugs. This process, which has never been depicted publicly before, was shot in July 2012 under IDF supervision. Sarah Sarah (2012) is a mirror piece to Avraham Avraham and shows the Muslims evacuating the compound. When the doors open, Jews enter and unpack their belongings, such as plastic chairs and bibles. The length, rhythm and structure of both videos is the same, and in the middle of each piece is the moment in which the doors open and a delicate balance is shifted.

Scenario (2012) is a single-channel video that documents the preparations for an emergency evacuation exercise of a building that supposedly collapsed during an earthquake or a missile attack. The work draws a powerful comparison between spaces that are holy for religious reasons and those holy for security reasons, illustrating the strong connection between religion, security, politics, and nationalism in Israel.

Similar threads are especially prominent in Pereg’s most recent piece, Compulsory Passage (2012), a five-channel video installation shot over five months at the historical site Qasr el Yahud, on the banks of the Jordan River. The site is holy to both Jews and Christians: Jews believe it is where the tribes of Israel crossed into the Holy Land after 40 years in the desert. Christians believe it is is where John the Baptist baptized Jesus. After the 1967 Six Day war, the site was declared a closed military area and covered with mines, except for a three kilometer passage that serves Christian pilgrims. 

Pereg’s work is influenced by cinema and documentary video. Similarly to nature film documentarians, Pereg sets out on long-term shoots of places shaped by unusual human activity, shedding light on belief systems, political history, and social rituals.

Pereg has received awards from the Nathan Gottesdiener Foundation (2010) and the Israeli Ministry of Culture (2012). Her works have been exhibited in seminal museums and institutions such as MOMA P.S. 1 in New York, the Hirschhorn Museum in Washington D.C, KW Berlin, Kusntahlle Dusseldorf, the Israel Museum, the Tel-Aviv Museum of Art, the Shanghai Biennial, and more.

Curated by Sergio Edelsztein

This exhibition was made possible with generous support from The Muriel & Philip Berman Foundation.