Do you Love Me?, 2011 (installation view), installation: loudspeakers, canvas, spices, courtesy of the artist and Gallery 39 for Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv
Danny Yahav-Brown came to art from the heritage of Duchamp and conceptual art. He is well-versed in word-play and the use of readymade; painting is a less familiar territory for him, and yet, many of his works surrender a painterly thinking or a response to painting. In the present show he exhibits a piece which preserves the playful air typical of many of his works, and the reflexivity to painting and art history.
It consists of a wooden board with loudspeakers installed underneath. A piece of canvas is placed over an aperture in the board, with pigments and spices scattered thereon. When the music emanates from the loudspeakers, the pigments bounce on the canvas, creating a painting by themselves. One may say this is a painting created by music, a painting that was played. Instead of a painting hand, Yahav-Brown sets in motion a mechanical apparatus which eliminates the old aura and myth associated with the artist's hand, with inspiration and imagination, a work stemming from a tormented soul, and other clichés and crowns tied to the act of painting.
At first sight, the musical "painting machine" appears like a joke at the expense of painting. Through the irony, however, one may also identify a true passion to make a painting and a real perplexity vis-à-vis that passion. How does one make a painting, who makes a painting, how awkward it is to make a painting, and at the same time-how can one not make a painting?
Born in Israel, 1972; lives and works in Tel Aviv