Opening: Thursday, June 7, 8 pm
The Center for Contemporary Art Tel Aviv is pleased to announce a solo exhibition by Tchelet Ram (*1982, Kibbutz Hanita, lives and works in Tel Aviv) that will take place at the CCA’s first floor galleries, alongside interventions in additional spaces.
Tchelet Ram’s practice deals with the notion of a place and its potential loss. “Third Wheel,” her solo exhibition at the CCA, is based on the desire to live the life of a wanderer. Inspired by various forms of ascetic life and by the freedom it offers, the artist appropriates materials that are characterize of such lifestyles — materials that are embedded in meager and humble existence. Through her interest in the tension between the escapist horizon of nomadic life and its practical, essential, and survivalist mode, Ram conceived a show based on improvisation and modulation. Nomadism presupposes the lack of a fixed place of abode, and yet it is related to the capability of making a home in any place and with anything. Ram applies these ideas to the CCA and to its adjoining spaces.
Outside the CCA, Ram has placed a 1992 Subaru pickup truck that has been modified in various ways. In the 2010s, this iconic automobile is located on the seam between a work vehicle and an antique collectible; although it is still used for commute and storage, it gradually becomes a desirable, fetishized object. Her sculptural gestures directed at this vehicle oscillate between two contradictory movements: the first is of a person in search for a home and has to do with structurally transforming the truck into a living space; the other is of an object on the verge of losing its use-value while undergoing an improvised process of conservation that attests to the inability to part with it.
Inside the gallery, various sculptures – which can be defined as surreal models of living spaces – are presented within a display that employs light and movement as a sign of suspended time. Ram inspects survivalist creativity and its game-like disposition. She examines the ability of the ephemeral to appropriate a space in a similar way to a child building a kingdom under the table, or a vagabond building a makeshift shelter for the night, only to dismantle it by dawn. For Ram, one’s capability to lead a modular existence marks an acceptance of the uncertain and persistently changing nature of life. Thus, the various sculptures in the exhibition also require a movement – of light, of the body, of the imagination.
“Tchelet Ram: Third Wheel” is guest curated by Hila Cohen-Schneiderman, the newly appointed chief curator of MoBY: Museums of Bat Yam. The exhibition is supported by the Israel Lottery Council for the Arts and the Yehoshua Rabinowitz Foundation for the Arts, Tel Aviv.
Images: Liat Elbling