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MEL ALEXENBERG: CYBERANGELS
AESTHETIC PEACE PLAN FOR THE MIDDLE EAST

Aesthetic Peace Plan for the Middle East, 1989

The exhibition runs from 12 August until 26 September 2004 in the Robert Guttmann Gallery.
Open daily 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., except Saturdays and Jewish holidays


 

Cyberangels Ascending from the Land of IsraelThe Jewish Museum in Prague has prepared a new exhibition in association with the renowned Israel-based American Jewish artist, Mel Alexenberg. Entitled Cyberangels, the exhibition is focused on an aesthetic peace plan for the Middle East.
The exhibition is part of the ongoing series Jewish Presence in Contemporary Visual Art (now into its second year) at the Robert Guttmann Gallery, which is focused on exploring the relation between Judaism and contemporary visual culture. The curator is Michaela Hájková. This is an experimental curatorial project, the aim of which is to contribute to the debate on the position and role of minorities in the globalized media and visual art world.

Angel Stopping AbrahamThe aim of this exhibition project is to actively involve the viewer in the artwork by using modern technology and to support plurality in art, dialog and a crossing of language and social barriers. The outcome of the project will be an interactive gallery installation with several computer stations from which visitors will be able to send out a message of peace in the form of a computer angel. The installation will be supplemented with prints of artistic computer graphics that reflect the current situation in Israel as seen by the artist.

Kilim Bakhtiar, Central Iran, 1950–60Mel Alexenberg is known to the wider public as the guest curator of the legendary exhibition LightsOROT. As part of this exhibition, he presented four of his own projects that took shape in 1987. One of these was the installation Rembrandt's Light, which incorporated the image of a computer angel taken from a Rembrandt etching. Since the LightsOROT exhibition, Rembrandt angels have made frequent appearances in Alexenberg's public art events.
In Alexenberg's conception of art as a creative and responsive system, computer angels are the bearers of a spiritual message, the content of which is realized / materialized in our world through art works.

Subway Angel / English Muffin, 1987In the installation Cyberangels - Aesthetic Peace Plan for the Middle East, which is being presented at the Robert Guttmann Gallery, Alexenberg has given the Rembrandt angels, symbols of European culture, the role of peacemakers and mediators, disseminating across the Internet a message that calls for a paradigm shift in the way the Middle East conflict is perceived. Alexenberg's proposal for an aesthetic peace plan for the Middle East should be seen as a subjective artistic testimony which however, in a highly original way, reveals analogies that unfortunately tend to become lost in the vortex of religious and political debates.

 

 

 

 

“O my people, enter the Holy Land which God has assigned unto you, and then turn not back ignominiously, for then will ye be overthrown, to your own ruin.”  Koran, Sura 5:21)  “May your coming be for peace, Angels of Peace, angels of the Exalted One.” (quoted from the Shabbath Eve song Shalom aleikhem).

Our special thanks also go to His Excellency, Mr. Arthur Avnon, Ambassador of the State of Israel to the Czech Republic, under whose auspices the exhibition is being held.
We are also indebted to the following partners: College of Judea and Samaria in Ariel, Israel, and Professor Michael Bielicky, Head of the New Media Department I at the Prague Academy of Fine Arts, Nomad Carpet Shop & Gallery Lucerna, Prague, and CD-Foto Bler of Prague.
Last but not least, we would like to thank the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity, an LA-based non-profit educational institution, for providing financial support for the exhibition.
 

Circumglobal Cyberangel Flight - Photographic documentation of an art event reproduced in 3 million copies of AT&T's 1989 Annual Report showing Mel Alexenberg sending a cyberangel around the world via AT&T satellites.



 
Other articles about the project:

www.jta.org/page_view_story.asp?intarticleid=17192&intcategoryid=5

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