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”Gaining in a State of Debt”: Alex Mirutziu`s first solo exhibition in Israel opens at CCA Tel Aviv

Added on by Alex Mirutziu.

Gaining in a State of Debt

Curated by Nicola Trezzi

Dates: March 14 – April 18, 2019

Opening: March 14 at 8 pm

Performance schedule:

March 14, 8 pm (opening)
March 19, 6 pm
March 22, 12 am
April 1, 8 pm
April 10, 8 pm
April 13, 1 pm (closing)

Performed by Oran Barak, Harel Grazutis and Nunzia Picciallo

The Center for Contemporary Art

Tsadok HaCohen 2, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

The Center for Contemporary Art (CCA) presents “Gaining in a State of Debt”, the first solo exhibition by Romanian artist Alex Mirutziu (1981, Sibiu, Romania. Lives and works in Cluj-Napoca, Romania).

Mirutziu’s practice extends over a wide range of media and activities, including sculpture, drawing, poetry, and performance, as well as critical and curatorial projects. In his work, which is both highly intellectual and deeply physical, he expands the notions of approximation and proximity in connection to time, presenting “dislocated modes of arrival at meaning.” In his modus operandi, he seeks to facilitate the understanding of the body as a “turbulent performative occasion” – drawing on the poetics of homelessness and invisibility. Through his artworks, he looks at ways of suspending the set-ups of doing and un-doing, thinking and un-thinking. Alongside TAH29 (The Artist Himself at 29), he acts within a collective body whose modus operandi is “retroactive irony.”

His exhibition at CCA Tel Aviv features a new performative work, entitled Bottoms Know It, and a compilation of videos that contextualize the new work and at the same time open up new avenues of understanding. Conceived for CCA Tel Aviv and featuring three performers and three props, Bottoms Know It exposes what may come across as being implicit but unnoticed, which is not necessarily a feature of truth-making.

Through the combination of different streams of thoughts and informed by philosophical concepts that are always personalized and freely interpreted, the artist is capable of creating time-based and durational experiences between himself and the viewer, using the artwork – whether in the form of an object or a body (his own or somebody else’s) – as a channel, a catalyst, a sort of remote controller that is linking two individuals, himself and the viewer, possibly located in two different geographical and time zones. However, all the aforementioned notions never come as we usually expect them: “time-based” should be considered according to an unusual notion of time; “durational” should be perceived according to a larger scope of perception. The work of Alex Mirutziu not only makes us think, it also makes us think about the conditions allowing us to think, and un-think, to do, and un-do.

Video program (not on view during the performances):

Doing Sub Thinking, 2018. HD video, video documentation of performance, 10:51 min. Performers: Ekin Bernay, Rowdy_SS, and Jenn Vogtle. Commissioned by Block Universe Festival in collaboration with Delfina Foundation and European Art East Foundation, London. Courtesy of the artist, Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca, and Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich. [video]

But as a document, 2015. HD video, performance to camera, 12:01 min. Performer: Pär Andersson; director of photography: Michael Tomescu. Courtesy of the artist, Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca, and Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich. [video]

Dignity to the unsaid, 2017. HD video, 17:42 min. Word workers: Alex Popa, Irina Sibef, and Cosmin Stănilă; director of photography: Alexandru Don; camera assistant: Victor Merca. Commissioned by Marie-Laure Fleisch Gallery, Brussels. Courtesy of the artist, Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca, and Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich.

Stay[s] against confusion, 2016. HD video, 14:53 min. Performer: Joshua Hubbard; director of photography: Kassandra Powell, Loukas Elark. Commissioned by Delfina Foundation, London. Courtesy of the artist, Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca, and Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich. [video]

The gaze is a prolapse dressed in big business, 2018. HD video, 14:37 min. Commissioned by Frac des Pays de la Loire, Carquefou (France). Courtesy of the artist, Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca, and Galerie Rüdiger Schöttle, Munich. [video]


“Alex Mirutziu: Gaining in a State of Debt” is curated by Nicola Trezzi in close collaboration with the artist. The exhibition is supported by Invitro, the OUTSET Residency in Tel Aviv, and the Romanian Cultural Institute – Tel Aviv. Additional support provided by Galeria Sabot, Cluj-Napoca and TAROM.


Added on by Alex Mirutziu.


March 30 – May 26, 2018

Opening reception on March 29, 8 pm

Monica Bonvicini in conversation with Sergio Edelsztein on March 29, 7 pm

The Center for Contemporary Art Tel Aviv

Tsadok HaCohen 2, Tel Aviv-Yafo, Israel

Born from Rock,  Collection II , 2015, Michael Topyol

Born from Rock, Collection II, 2015, Michael Topyol

The Center for Contemporary Art Tel Aviv is pleased to announce its next exhibition KEDEM–KODEM–KADIMA which includes contributions by Diti Almog, Arahmaiani, Yochai Avrahami, Ilit Azoulay, Guy Ben-Ner, Monica Bonvicini, Born from Rock, Rafram Chaddad, Latifa Echakhch, Ceal Floyer, Shilpa Gupta, Peter Halley, Michal Helfman, Chourouk Hriech, Gaston Zvi Ickowicz, Eti Jacobi, Christian Jankowski, Kitty Kraus, Jannis Kounellis, Agnieszka Kurant, Mierle Laderman Ukeles, Benoît Maire, Alex Mirutziu & TAH29, Jonathan Monk, Laurent Montaron, Natan Tarfe, Joshua Neustein, Adrian Paci, Eli Petel, Pratchaya Phinthong, Wilfredo Prieto, Public Movement, Tomer Rosenthal, Miri Segal, Ariel Schlesinger, Shiri Tarko, Jan Tichy, Naama Tsabar, Alice Tomaselli, Lihi Turjeman, Günther Uecker, Johannes VanDerBeek, Lawrence Weiner, and Nevet Yitzhak.

Presented at the CCA together with three additional spaces in Tel Aviv—Born from Rock’s workshop, Idris, and The Lobby – Art Space—“KEDEM–KODEM–KADIMA” is the first exhibition curated by the CCA’s new director, Nicola Trezzi. Among the many ideas connected to this project, six of them deserve to be mentioned in this context. The first one is the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the CCA Tel Aviv, which was initiated in 1998 by Sergio Edelsztein, who directed it until 2017 and who will stay on as Chairman of the Board. Mirroring this pivotal moment in the history of the institution, “KEDEM–KODEM–KADIMA” will include works by artists whose work has been exhibited at the CCA in the past—such as Arahmaiani, Ceal Floyer, Michal Helfman, Christian Jankowski, Agnieszka Kurant, and Adrian Paci—and works by artists who will present projects in the future—such as Ilit Azoulay, Laurent Montaron, Naaba Tsabar, and Nevet Yitzhak.

The second idea is connected to the title of the exhibition. Hebrew is a fascinating language based on roots; from one root you can “build” multiple words, sometimes different if not in contradiction with each other. This is the case of the root kuf(ק), dalet (ד), mem (מ), from which you can build kedem [ancient], kodem [before], and kadima [forward]. Following this concept, many works will be created, or recreated, especially for the exhibition, and some of them will eventually disappear or be destroyed. Following this attitude, the exhibition is dedicated to Jannis Kounellis (1936-2017), whose last exhibition was conceived and presented in Israel.

The third idea connected to this exhibition is the choice of a specific display. On the ground floor and balcony of the CCA, and also in the three additional spaces, works have been juxtaposed in accordance to disparate associations. Concepts, notions, and figures as diverse as “human condition,” “site-specific,” “Passover,” and “fire and water” have been employed to bring works of art together. Inspired by the “Radiant Face of Moses” (Exodus 34:29-35), on the first floor gallery of the CCA, the space will be kept dark and all the works presented there will generate their own light in the form of video projections, light bulbs, light boxes, and more.

The forth idea is the decision to include an exhibition-within-the-exhibition called “Department of Rocks and Stones.” Rocks and stones both symbolize construction and destruction. They also appear in seminal passages of the New Testament, from Jesus’s provocation “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her” (John 8:1-10) to his verbal testament “And I tell you that you are Peter, [The Greek word for Peter means rock] and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it” (Matthew 16:13-20). Scattered within the exhibition, the “Department of Rocks and Stones” includes works by Jannis Kounellis, Michal Helfman, Joshua Neustein, Shilpa Gupta, Johannes VanDerBeek, and Jonathan Monk among others.

The fifth idea is connected to the choice of extending the exhibition to the three aforementioned spaces—going against territoriality and instead embracing collegiality and inclusivity. Following these premises “KEDEM–KODEM–KADIMA” goes beyond its own premises—the Rachel & Israel Pollak Gallery—scattered in different areas of the city. Like its logo, the Center for Contemporary Art Tel Aviv will function as a “black sun” with several satellites (spaces), emphasizing elliptical trajectories (elliptical time versus linear time) and its related concept of “eccentricity.”

The sixth and last idea is a public program that will start before the exhibition opens and will continue throughout its duration. The program includes a conversation between Pratchaya Phinthong and Nicola Trezzi on March 20, a conversation between Monica Bonvicini and Sergio Edelsztein on the opening day on March 29, an artist talk by Chourouk Hriech on April 2, a roundtable with Drorit Gur-Arie, Doron Rabina, and Nicola Trezzi, moderated by Hila Cohen-Schneiderman on May 9, and a conversation between Christian Jankowski and Sergio Edelsztein on May 17. In addition to this program, on April 13 and 14 Public Movement will perform their action The Interview.

The “KEDEM–KODEM–KADIMA” is made possible with the support of the Ruth Ivor Foundation, Dana Sheves, Daniel Milman, Ari Rosenblatt, Yehoshuah Gessel & Yoel Kremin, Yifat Gurion and Fresh Paint, Outset Contemporary Art Fund, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Tel Aviv, Institut Français, Tel Aviv, and the Fondation Jacqueline de Romilly under the auspices of the Fondation de France, Artport, Fortes D’Aloia & Gabriel, São Paulo / Rio de Janeiro, Inga Gallery, Tel Aviv, Tyler Rollins Fine Art, New York, and Sommer Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv.

The Center for Contemporary Art is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Sport – Visual Arts Department; Tel Aviv Municipality – Culture and Arts Division; UIA – the United Israel Appeal; the CCA’s International Council, which welcomes its new members Luca Barbeni, Manon Slome, and Susanna Perini; the Zucker Foundation Fund; and those who wish to remain anonymous.

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