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Orna Milo
Creation's Details
Title: Concealing the Face – Installation and Presentation
Year: 2002
Dimensions: 3 glass panes, 160x 220 cm
Material: Glass, pottery (white porcelain), soapsuds

The installation is a happening or a process in which I paint using erasure or removal of material. Paintings are erased and revealed and in that very same process, verses from Proverbs and the Book of Job are written.
The work relates to vision and to what blocks vision. Vision seeks to break through boundaries, just as consciousness seeks to break through intellectual boundaries.

Concealment of Face
Rabbi Raphael of Barshid, the beloved student of Rabbi Pinchas, told a story: On the first day of Chanukkah I heard from the Rabbi, that when things are difficult for man, it is hard for him to maintain his faith in individual protection. He supposes that the Creator is really hiding His face from him. What should be done to strengthen faith?
“If one knows” said the Rabbi, “that this is concealment of the Face, then it is not concealment of the face anymore.”

Covering – Revealing – Discovering
The glass panes undergo a process - “from opaque to transparent”.
The first pane is the most opaque, and even after it is “open” it remains partly “sealed” by netting.
The second pane of glass is also not fully open in the process of the decorative erasing of clay, because some of the drawing remains trapped inside between the two panes, without the possibility of erasure.
The third pane opens in the center and through the process of erasing and cleaning, the level of total transparency makes it possible to look through the pane. In addition, it is possible to see the connection between the transparency of air and the transparency of glass.

Within the process of drawing and erasing, writing and drawing are incorporated, so that it is not always clear exactly where the writing begins and the drawing ends. The verses written within the erasure are: “Open Eyes” – the name of a place in the story of Tamar and Judah (Genesis, 38, 14) and verses from the book of Job.
These verses are sometimes written from right to left and sometimes in mirror writing from left to right so that they are partially hidden. The hiding or the secrecy of the meaning of the words turns them, on one hand, into figurative elements, and on the other hand, to something blocked that needs deciphering. Writing from both sides results in the use of the text in English and the words: “May I see?”
The work process in the installation is one of removal of material that covers the panes of glass and reveals the transparency in stages.
It is suggested that a conventional painting is a barrier to vision, a barrier that must be removed. In this work the “painting barrier” is open and through the process, the painting itself is also erased and disappears. Thus, space can pass through and be reflected in it.
The pane of glass itself is also a barrier to the space, despite its transparency. Therefore the last pane of glass is constructed so that it is open in the middle and this facilitates a free and open path into the space.


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