Julie Saul Gallery announces Shai Kremer’s third solo show, timed to coincide with the opening of the new World Trade Center. An evocation of site, a remembrance of tragedy, a progression towards healing - Shai Kremer’s World Trade Center: Concrete Abstract series at once aims for an individual and universal response to the destruction and rebuilding of the World Trade Towers. Like his past series, Kremer maintains “a post-traumatic gaze fixed on the cityscape of Manhattan - and by extrapolation, to the sociological landscape of America.” Kremer uses a process linking “accumulation, destruction, and reconstruction” that form images which are psychologically complex. Here he literally layers images within one frame, whereas in past work his vision was expressed through individual images which collectively demonstrate the layering of history.
In 2011, Kremer was granted access to the construction site of One World Trade Center, where he photographed until 2013. As the series progresses, we see the structure of the new building take shape. Within the evolution of the project, Kremer has also inserted images of the destruction and remains of the original building, which he obtained through public record. In conjunction with our show, and the opening of the new building, several institutions throughout New York City will show individual images from the series including The Museum of the City of New York, The Brooklyn Academy of Music, and The Bronx Museum of the Arts.
As an Israeli, Kremer is invested in the political tensions in Israel - an awareness that has left an indelible stamp on his artistic production. Exhibited in Europe and throughout the United States, his 2001-2006 Infected Landscape series (Dewi Lewis, 2008) explored the social and environmental impact of military combat. He explains the project as a “metaphoric portrayal of the military disfiguration of the Israeli landscape.” Kremer’s subsequent Fallen Empires (Dewi Lewis and Radius Books, 2011) series harks back to the earliest militaristic history on Israeli soil up to the present, and its impact on the land as well as former military occupants - intents that bring about questions of identity and geographic ownership. Kremer is also committed to documenting New York’s lesser travelled neighborhoods in response to ever changing urban contradictions.
Kremer divides his time between New York and Israel. He received his MFA from the School of Visual Arts. His work has been exhibited widely, including Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, Houston Center for Photography, the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, The Tate Modern, the Walker Art Center and many others. Kremer’s work is in numerous public collections including Bowdoin College, the Schwartz Art Collection at the Harvard School of Business, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, the Rose Museum at Brandeis University and the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago.
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