Art in its different forms has been my passion through most of my life. Early in my life I spent some time living and working as an apprentice with an artist in a small community in Israel. Later I practised pottery, oil painting and furniture design in various colleges in London. Recently, I completed a level 2 City & Guilds Art and Design Certificate at Wensum Lodge in Norwich.
My work is a figurative triptych using a combination of watercolours, Conté crayons and printing ink. The work depicts a scene of two young men fighting inside an open-air theatre, performing in front of a cheering crowd. I have based it on the Odeon Of Herodes Atticus built in Athens between AD 161 and AD 174.
The Odeon (meaning a singing place) was built on the south slopes of the Acropolis and it held exercise, music, poetry and singing competitions. The athletes are placed on a podium, derived from the Greek word for foot. This was an elevated platform designed to show off the competition winners.
I chose the painter El Greco (1541–1614) as my inspiration. El Greco was a Greek (modern-day Crete) artist, sculptor and architect who lived and worked in Rome in 1570, developing and working in the Mannerism of Venetian Renaissance, which was practised by artists such as Tintoretto. In 1577 he moved to Toledo in Spain where he lived and died at the age of 77. His religious paintings were loose and imaginative. He was not as concerned with technical and observational accuracy as with drama and storytelling.
My work deals with the issues of conflict and competition. The fighters are merely players used for profit and the entertainment of the paying crowds. The questions that I ask the observer are: who is sitting in the crowd? Who are the players? Why are they in that arena? And what are they fighting for?