Interview With Ariela Wertheimer The Artist Behind The Jaffa Venice Light Boxes Exhibition

By Jodi Truglio — August 07, 2017

“Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth,”said Ariela Wertheimer, who is the artist behind the Jaffa Venice Light Boxes Exhibition. “Every work symbolizes a whole world for me and for the beholder. The works that are always meaningful to me are the works that begin a series that develops my ability to express myself differently.”

Born in Israel in 1957, Ariela Wertheimer is a multi-disciplinary artist who began painting at a young age. Today she resides in a quiet suburb of Caesarea not far from the city of Tel Aviv and has emerged as a storyteller of sorts drawing inspiration for current exhibit from the city. The exhibit focuses on fences, construction metals and faces. Wertheimer was inspired to tell her personal stories of people who live there and the sometimes eerie deceptive neon lights which together create a combination of urban art.

In 2016, She opened an exclusive exhibition at the Farkash Gallery called “The Freedom to Let Go” Light Boxes. In May 2017, her exhibit will be in Vienna Biennale in Venice at the Palazzo Mora hosted by the European Cultural Center.

Recently, Global Looking Glass had the pleasure to ask Ariela Wertheimer a few questions about her work.

Tell me a little about yourself?

Technically speaking, my art is not fixated to just one medium. The pieces deal with photographic prints on paintings with a play of light and what is created between the photographs and the paintings.  On another spectrum, the pieces deal with the philosophy of life. Our strengths and weaknesses as people and freedom of expression and creativity.

How would you describe your art?

My art is influenced by life, from the events we go through every day, it derives from the place that we as people respond differently to the same situations that of course reflect our inner strengths and weaknesses. We react from an emotional standpoint and may change according to the mood. The word “mood” already reflects a state of movement and change, and a spirit which is constantly shifting.

What inspires your art?

The source of inspiration and influence for me was the fact that I studied X-rays on the one hand and mediation on the other, the experience of being a mother of five children, and the difficulties I experienced which aided in my personal growth over the years.

Is there a story behind any of the pieces?

The story behind Jaffa Venice deals with the fact that people are people no matter where they are in the world.  It doesn’t matter where they live – they tend to deal with the same questions, issues, joys and obstacles of life.

Though the scenery is different, the two cities are both port cities, cities where local culture is mixed with various external cultures with different smells, tastes, and textures.  Both cities know how to make an interesting and intriguing mixture of intellectual and existential pluralism.

The eyes and the expression of the people in “Lightbox Portraits” are very haunting, What inspired it?

The eyes are a reflection of the soul. Joy, fear, sadness, wonder, anger … all can be seen in the eyes and over the years, these emotions slide into the lines and creases of our face and deepen themselves into the furrows of our facial expressions. We tend to look people in the eyes when we speak to them, so that if you listen to them, their gaze usually doesn’t lie…






Can you tell me the meaning behind Rope Series?

The meaning of the ropes presented in my work is the subject of relationships. In Hebrew, the words bond and relationships come from the same root. A bond that is positive or a bond that is too strong and tight or a bond that is too loose and does not hold over time. A rope/bond which is a lifeline compared to a rope/bond which can be used to hang oneself or a rope/bond of the umbilical cord, -the imagery of the rope symbolizes life for me.

Do you have a favorite medium to work with?

There isn’t one specific medium which I prefer to work with.  On the contrary, I enjoy using many different techniques allowing several perspectives and experiences of the same piece.

I noticed that the colors blue and yellow seem to be recurring in your painting is there a deliberate reason for this?

Until I received this question, I did not think about it. Color is very intuitive for me. On second thought, blue symbolizes depth, darkness, and the sea – and everything that entails. Yellow is light – sunlight, if too strong can burn…, and a pleasant light can caress, fields of soil and nature.

What is in store for the future?

In the future, I will probably continue to explore myself through other people and situations. I have just finished printing photographs of ropes and nets and will continue the subject from a different direction.


Courtesy Images: Ariela Wertheimer

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