Curator: Dveer Shaked
HAKOAH explores the desire for power and its realization. The works in the exhibition draw inspiration from Jewish fencing clubs that operated in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century, with "Hakoah Vienna" being one of the largest and central among them. In the gallery space, which underwent structural changes to resemble a fencing club, photographic works are presented based on archival materials from these historical clubs.
Beauty and elegance are central elements in the legacy of a fencing club. They equate to prestige and strength, creating a symbolic syntax of power, tradition, and splendor. Velvet curtains, emblems, trophies, or club group photos integrate into HAKOAH as condensed representations. The body and flesh are absent in the exhibition, as are the fencing blads; none of these are needed in the space of abstract power.
A second glance reveals that the beauty in the exhibition is wounded and veils a loss. Behind it stands an empty club where its members have disappeared in a storm of war and atrocities. The works in the space resonate with unrealized power and lost potential.