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Roni Ben Porat – Artist statement

Roni Ben Porat (1995), a multidisciplinary artist working predominantly with sculpture and installation. 

Through the act of deconstructing and destroying, I learn and explore, while turning a contemporary gaze at the relics of the past and addressing the meaning of the material. In my work process, as well as in the works themselves, I combine language and techniques from the world of architecture, in order to understand, hone, and appropriate the space in which I operate. 

In many of my works, I explore contemporary social-cultural phenomena involving architectural spaces and spatial encounters, to which I respond in a conceptual, abstract, and enigmatic language, with an emphasis on installation. The tension between deconstruction and destruction and “fundamentality” fascinates me and I draw a lot of inspiration from it. The aspiration and strong desire to go back and touch the primordial core of the thing embodies the rationale behind all my actions as an artist, the engagement with the constructive skeleton that supports the entire thing we call “an artwork.” I believe that there is a close connection between destruction and "fundamentality." Destruction holds elements of the sublime, beauty, stillness, a potential new beginning that returns "to the foundation," to the nucleus. The act of deconstructing and destructing teaches me and allows me to understand the structure of the subject I explore, and through it, refine the "fundamentality."

In recent years, the way I process the different materials has become consistent. Excavating, etching, subtracting, burrowing into the depths of the material to uncover the primary core. In addition, the acts of subtracting and engraving scar the material and immortalize my action as an artist. The need to search and return to base corresponds with the actions of archeologists who excavate the earth to find objects that have survived the passage of time. “Fundamentality” and primordiality are the initial core from which everything evolves, and lead me to take various acts of subtraction to try and understand it. This “fundamentality” is also present in the formal language. Geometric shapes that draw inspiration from architectural plans and remnants of historical buildings, which hold another aspect of symbolical, cultural-historical “fundamentality.” The visual language and the processing of the material meet in the installation, in which I uncover and form physical layers that play with the boundaries of the two and three dimensional. This eventually leads to the establishment of three main elements: the temporal element, reflected in the action of digging back to return to the "foundation," the spatial element, and the material element. The three come together into a new, whole, harmonious entity, as if they were always intertwined with each other.

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