2009-10 | Jerusalem, Israel | Three Channel Video with Sound | Duration: 22 min 49 sec.loop | Edition of 7+2AP
KEPT ALIVE installed at Tel-Aviv Museum of Art- as part of the Solo Exhibition MOUNTAIN: Consisting of SABBATH 2008, KEPT ALIVE and KEPT ALIVE PORTRAITS as part of The Nathan Gottesdiener Foundation Israeli Art Prize’s finalists March-August 2010.
Kept Alive (a literal translation from Hebrew שמור בחיים ) refers to the text engraved upon headstones to reserve pre-purchased burial spots.
The custom arose from bureaucratic necessity, but grew to function as a popular charm to ensure a healthy and long life for the purchaser.
Kept Alive is a three channel video and photo installation focused on Jerusalem’s largest cemetery-”Har Hamenuchot” (Mountain of Rest).
The project documentary approach is employed to address the enormous cemetery’s three primary activities: construction, burial, and visitation.
The cemetery is one of Israel’s largest, however, burial grounds are precious and expensive, due to geographic location and general lack of space.
Despite the site’s intense density, with just over 10 inches between graves, it is still possible to purchase and reserve plots.
Filming on location for seven month, the work investigates intersections between the living and the dead. The multi-channel video installation reconstructs the mountain, in which all the cemetery’s conflicting processes occur simultaneously. The work’s sound is also artificially constructed, sampled from various sources and pieced together in a studio. The almost-real, re-choreographs the Mountain of Rest, isolating gestures and movements, giving them new roles.
The project also consist of an accompanying selection of photographs documents numerous markers placed on the empty, reserved graves,presented as portraits of their purchaser. Each stands for a living individual offering the means to occupy territory in the land of the dead. Click here to view Kept Alive Portraits.
Installation and images >
Filming & Editing: Nira Pereg | Sound design : Nati Zeidenstadt | Post: Tal Korjak