Sweet 16, exhibition catalogue, Bat Yam Museum of Art, 2007
curator: Neta Gal-Azmon
Uri Gershuni presents of a series depicting portarits of clubbing teenagers that he documented over a three-year period at the ‘TLV’ club in Tel-aviv during the wee hours of the night and in his illuminated studio during the day. In the moments frozen by his camera, the dance is halted, the club décor vanishes, and the background noises are silenced for a split second; the teenagers, whose gazes surrender their passion and solitude, are drawn to the flash like butterflies whose youthful beauty is short-lived. The photographs present the young boys and girls in a uniform format against a flat, one-dimensional backdrop which provides no identifying details about the photographic location and its context. Nevertheless, the reductive, visual, direct nature of the photographic surface creates a uniformity that tends to accentuate the subject’s divergence and uniqueness. Gershuni momentarily isolates the youngsters from the “herd” to which they belong like a hunter who notices the prey. In the depicted present, the girls take part in a tribal ritual which cloaks their socio-economic or geographical affiliation,
resulting in a fascinating dialogue of opposites between day and night, dark and sublime, power minded and vulnerable.