“Breathing Song” at Haifa Museum

"Vital Signs: Pulse and Breathing Rhythm in Contemporary Art"

Miriam Cabessa challenges the boundaries of painting, while maintaining a close affinity to the tradition of the medium. Appearing machine-made, her paintings result from meticulous manual painting in oil paints, where the artist’s body functions as a brush, and her breaths create the images.
Holding a piece of cloth dipped in paint, Cabessa presses her hands to the wall and keeps still. In a long, meditative act whose essence is the cessation of movement, the resulting painting ostensibly creates itself by the involuntary movements of the hands: when they move, the paint is spread, and when they stop, a dark patch is created. It is the artist’s breaths that move her body and create a painting that is all inhaling and exhaling, movement and arrest, adding and subtracting paint. In fact, Cabessa does not paint with her hands only, because her entire body, including its internal organs and the innermost physical and mental processes, functions as an
active partner in the creative process.

In the current exhibition, Cabessa applies the paint to the museum walls, creating a painting that unites with the space containing it and defines its boundaries. The space created by Cabessa is a direct expression of her body, and as such, it is also a space of life – a space generated by a vital, changing and moving body. Viewers are invited to immerse themselves in this panoramic body-painting, and in the process to stop and observe what is happening inside them.

Participating artists: Absalon, Sharon Azagi, Christian Boltanski, Louise Bourgeois, Miriam Cabessa, Lilach Chitayat, Sophie Dupont, Regina José Galindo, Gideon Gechtman, Douglas Gordon, Inbal Hoffman, Dikla Moskovich, Avi Sabah, Alma Shneor, Dor Zlekha Levy.

New exhibition at Haifa Museum
Thursday, 09.02.23, until Sunday 25.6.23
Curator: Dr. Kobi Ben-Meir