Works by Nirit Takele currently on view at C24 Gallery in the exhibition, You Belong Here
 
 
 
From the Salon:
Narrative and Abstraction in the Work of Nirit Takele 
 
 
The work of Ethiopian-Israeli artist Nirit Takele, currently on display as part of the C24 Gallery exhibition, You Belong Here, has recently attracted the attention of art-writer and cultural critic, Enos Nyamor in an article he penned for the publication, africanah.org. Here is an excerpt:
 
 
"… when looking at Nirit’s Big Man, 2020, there is an awareness of staring at a larger than life figure. The fingers of this figure, captured through a variation of color intensities, are reminiscent of observing an elevated figure, almost kingly in stature.
 
"Extending this elevation, this abstraction captured through Nirit’s colorism, is the superimposition of colored strips around the figures. According to Nirit, these strips are embodiment of her Ethiopian heritage. Indeed, anyone who is conversant with the Ethiopian traditional dress, especially the Habesha Kemis, will instantly recognize the affiliation to Nerit’s conceptualization. These strips are of varying patterns and are perceptible in most of the paintings on view. Like robes, these strips encircle the figures, and in a subtle way, enhancing the appearance of the figures. In Figure, 2020, the subject sits in the middle of the canvas, the strips, hemming the moon-white shawl, flow around the figure. Yet still there is the almost string absence of overt facial expression, and it is in this voluntary omission of details that Nirit’s abstraction flourish. In place of the figure’s eye, for example, is a splotch of maroon, and the rendering technique is almost cubist.
 
"In spite of the appearance of color in conveying abstraction, it is the grounding of her figures in the chocolate or brown skin textures that become the trope for the identity crisis in Nirit’s work. As mentioned, all these figures are elevated. They are presented almost as kingly, emitting unsurpassed confidence. But the condition she portrays is paradoxical to the reality that Israeli-Ethiopians face, despite their faith. Their Jewishness is still under constant doubt. It is as if their identity ranks at the bottom of the Israeli society. Nirit perceives her dark-skinned figures to be an act of disrupting the dominance of light-skin in Israel art. Her work is projecting the subaltern of the Israeli society into the visual repository, hyphenating the cultural landscape with the often intimidated subculture."
 
 
The article explores Takele’s visual take on the Ethiopian Jewish presence in Israel, as a personal participant and observer. At a time when the continued domination of race and racism as cultural determinants has focused into critical flashpoints here in the United States, we are grateful for the opportunity to explore issues of racial identity from multiple, international perspectives.
 
 
To read Nymaor’s full article, click HERE.
 
For more information about works by Nirit Takele, click on the images, or email: deborah@c24gallery.com.

  
 
 
 
Nirit Takele, Big Man, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 39.37 x 39.37in. (100 x 100cm)
 
 
 
 
 
Nirit Takele, Figure, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 39.37 x 31.5in. (100 x 80cm)
 
 
  
 
 
Nirit Takele, Stretching Leg, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 19.69 x 19.69in. (50 x 50cm)
 
 
 
 
 
Nirit Takele, Figure in Shape, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 39.37 x 31.5in. (100 x 80cm)
 
 
 
 
 
Nirit Takele, Watching Me, 2020, acrylic on canvas, 43.31 x 31.5in. (110 x 80cm)
 
 
 
 
 
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