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Black Box: Ori Gersht

December 22, 2008 – April 12, 2009 Rotating Exhibition

Museum: Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden

Location: Lower Level

The Black Box theater showcases rotating exhibitions of contemporary artists who use film or video as their creative medium. Films or videos run continuously.

December 22, 2008-April 12, 2009:
Ori Gersht (b. 1967, Tel Aviv), who currently lives and works in London, is noted for his series of large-scale photographs and arresting moving-image pieces. His work encourages viewers to reflect on the power of natural beauty and how it is affected by human intervention, such as the following film:

  • The Forest (2006, 13:22 min.): The artist uses the camera to pan a lush, primeval forest located in the Moskalova woods that span Poland and the Ukraine, a site that has personal meaning for him. Sound alternates with silence and suddenly a tree falls to the ground with a thunderous echo. Who or what is causing the tree to fall? Is this a statement about nature and inevitability? Or is it an exercise in anticipation?

Also, included are two other works that reference traditional Spanish and Dutch still-life paintings in which precise arrangements of foods, fruits or flowers, are shown at their peak, implying the inevitably of decay. Gersht's imagery does not decay by dissolving over time; it combusts, and then in slow motion, recalls the time-lapse imagery of Harold Edgerton's scientific action photography as seen in the following works:

  • Pomegranate (2006, 3:52 min.) is shown on a flat-screen located next to the entrance of the Black Box Theater.

Note: Big Bang II (2006) is a recent acquisition on view on the 3rd floor.