One Weekby Camea Smith | 19.04.18
For his solo exhibition at Alfred Gallery, the artist Matan Golan drew inspiration from Buster Keaton’s silent comedy from 1920, “One Week.” Keaton’s first foray into solo film-making followed the mishaps of a newly wed couple struggling to construct a build-it-yourself house. After their wedding, a former beau of the bride meddles with the packing crates and alters the numbers on the pieces of the prebuilt house. As a result, despite the groom’s best efforts he only manages to assemble an asymmetrical, lopsided house with a cubist appearance. In one of the film’s most memorable scenes, one of the walls suddenly falls down to the ground, missing the groom by inches. He walks away unscathed, saved by a strategically placed window frame.
The sequence is re-imagined by Golan in a small scale sculpture, with the film protagonist’s presence marked by luminous foot prints, situated under a slouching wall. The silicon facade bends forward, frozen mid-fall and quivering from a breeze generated by an electric fan. On the nearby walls, a projector simulates a domestic moment: a car passing by outside during night time, its headlights shining through the window blinds. Another video is projected on a pair of fluorescent lamps, creating a flickering light dance. The exhibition also includes four monotypes made by pressing inflatable sea mattresses and water wings with a printing press onto paper. The gesture of pinning down feeble and corporeal materials appears once more in Golan’s photographs, depicting a silicon cast mold folded and fastened by ratchet straps.
Golan’s prints, sculptures and light projections seem to hover in a state of in-between, displaying a palpable presence or ghostlike impressions of a distorted cartoon world. His objects and structures are rendered powerless and presented as poetic fragments of a dysfunctional home. Matan Golan’s solo show “One Week,” curated by Smadar Levy, will open tonight (Thursday) at 20:00 at Alfred – A Cooperative Institute for Art and Culture (Simtat Shlush Street 5, Tel Aviv). It will be on view until May 18 and will be accompanied by two events: a lecture by Tamar Getter and Yehuda Nuriel on Buster Keaton’s film “One Week” on May 5 and a dance performance by Lihi Vegmaister on May 17.