POINTER

Kinetic Sculpture, Plaster Cast, Laser Pointer, Mechanical Engine, 2014
Exhibited as a part of "Made of Stone", group exhibition at the Roman Gate (Damascus Gate) Jerusalem. 
Collaboration with Rotem Zuta.
Curator: Tali Ben Nun

"Pointer" is a site-specific work made for the ancient Roman "Damascus" Gate to the Old City of Jerusalem.  A plaster cast of a hand holds a laser pointer, which sweeps across the room and toggles between two surfaces; a sign with a dry description of the conservation process of the Damascus Gate crenelations, and after a few seconds it moves to an archival aerial photograph of Jerusalem. The mechanical performance transforms both image into sitting ducks, with the laser pointer referencing both the didactic functionality of a lecture hall pointer and a sniper's gun-sight; a gun-sight that places the viewer, bot physically and conceptually, in the range that stretches between it and the target.

 

To a local audience, the sign describing the conservation process is not merely a list of scientific actions, but also a testament to an explicit imprint left by the British Mandate, who influenced local planning and style. Similarly, the action also determines for the viewer with veiled violence of where and at what they should look. The act of pointing at that specific text reveals the conservation as a potentially controversial act, guided by archaeological, political. and economic considerations. Focusing the gaze and the pointer on a certain image underscores the selective, fundamentally subjective, dimension of rewriting a historical narrative of a place. It engages with the politics of the gaze and the violence inherent to the didactic act of pointing.

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