Of Other Spaces

This Video work documents Haifa municipal workers uprooting a public bench in an open space. The uprooting of the bench was done at the personal request of Serfaty, a native of Haifa: She sent a letter to the municipality’s ombudsman’s office asking to remove the bench from the area adjacent to her parent’s home, explaining that because of an unfortunate incident that took place on the bench in the past, she could no longer walk in the area without being overwhelmed with distressing memories.By uprooting the bench, Serfaty believes, the troublesome memory will be replaced by a memory of the uprooting action, and this will have an effect of a liberating artistic act. In this work, Serfaty examines the boundaries between the emotional personal space and the public space, and the way in which we appropriate objects and territory to ourselves. The psychological dimension involved in our compulsive connection to objects extends to the political meaning accompanying the compulsive connection we develop in regard to places. The municipal employees function here as devoted therapists, who cleanse the area from past traumas for the patient, but also as obedient contractors for the act of uprooting.

100 Ready-Made Group Exhibition, Haifa Museum, Haifa,IL, 2013
Curtator: Ruti Direktor