Maya Israel’s Show at Feinberg Projects

by Ross Belfer | 16.12.15

Art is a subjective form of observation intended to stimulate one’s own intellectual mind for the purpose of thought, introspection and contemplation. Step back for a moment and slip your feet into an artist’s shoes, and you might discover layers of thought realized through choices of colour, obvious or implied scenery, design and composition wrapped into a permeable output of one’s interpretations of life and its ever-shifting moments.

In her upcoming exhibition, Water Marks, opening on December 17 at Feinberg Projects in south Tel Aviv, Maya Israel, a Bezalel School of Design-bred painter, focuses on the natural element of water as a unifying force of fluidity and a “hidden or exposed energy” that is omnipresent in each of the show’s 10 artworks.

Maya Israel Painting

Landscape and Memory, 2015, Oil on canvas, 90×120 cm

“My interest is in the reverberation between man and the environment,” comments Israel during a brief conversation earlier this week. Israel signals Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino as a main influence of the exhibition, especially “the parts where my thoughts both build and cancel the city through the characters or concepts echoes in a surrounding.”

Water Marks, which buoyantly exposes several never-before-seen works, focuses on water — the epicenter and fundamental motif of Israel’s latest compilation of paintings which ebbs and flows conceptually past the edges of the canvases.  The people, landscapes, plant-life, and sky depicted in the artwork are in a constant state of fluidity, embodying the inherent interplay between man and the universe.

Lanscape in Body Form, 2015, Oil on canvas, 160x130 cm

Landscape in Body Form, 2015, Oil on canvas, 160×130 cm

Maya Israel’s painting technique comes to life in a multi-layered aesthetic of erasing, covering, and leaving the remains in view. The images depicted on the canvases lack defining features, leaving their identity untainted by time and place. Void of this confining narrative, reminiscent of the boundless nature of water, the artwork elicits the emergence of a universal memory that has been submerged beneath the depths of the unconscious. Rich in saturation, the long, pigmented, brush strokes transfix and guide viewers to slip into the fine wrinkle that separates reality from dream.

Maya Israel, Untamed Landscape, 2015, Oil on canvas, 116x160 cm

Untamed Landscape, 2015, Oil on canvas, 116×160 cm

While inquiring about the people depicted in each of Israel’s pieces as lacking defining features, leaving their identity very much open to universal projection, the artist identifies her introspective processes influencing her work: “between reality and imagination and to allow the painting to exist in a deeper and wider space, I turn to the collective memory more than I do to the personal one in order to allow the viewer a chance to connect,” states Israel.

The Water Marks exhibition opens at 20:00 on December 17 and will run through January 30, 2016 at Feinberg Projects, located at 3 Hamif’al Street, 2nd floor.

Works by Maya Israel are available for purchase on Artsy. For more information about Water Marks exhibition at Feinberg Projects and the artist Maya Israel, visit

Maya Israel Painting

Intimidating, Time Intimidating Space, 2015, Oil on canvas, 130×100 cm


the latest


Abou A Guest House

by Ross Belfer Read more

Sound of the Time

by Ross Belfer Read more

To Tbilisi from Tel Aviv

by Ross Belfer Read more

write a comment


Designed by Natasha Boguslavsky |
development by tipoos