About Myself and My Art For me, photography as a two-dimensional surface which translates three dimensional reality, created in me a feeling of deficiency. I wanted to express an additional dimension, a fourth, not of time but of spirit: not only in the psychological/philosophical sphere – but something deeper that emerges from the subconscious. From here the way was short to the medium of photomontage, which is the combination of various elements in one picture. This between them produces interactions, affinity, dialogue and the creation of a new reality. In the same way that the secret of chemistry between two individuals cannot be explained through the intellect, so for me photomontage is the expression of mood, of spirit scenery where all the elements meet: fire, earth, water and air – and woman who contains all these inside her. In my photomontage photography frequently appears the image of the female nude. This is the subject that corresponds to my sensuality, but also to something deeper that is linked to cosmic nature, to universal mythos and archetypes. Nude photography is in fact a portrait of more intimacy, allowing direct expression, without masks - both of the personality of the model as well as that of the photographer. Woman, more than Man, has roots into life: Eve is the mother of all life! Therefore I agree with the French photographer Jeanloup Sieff who said: “I do not believe in God, but Woman is the proof of His existence.” Usually I do not give titles to my photos. The pictures should speak for themselves. I wish to give the viewer freedom to be face to face with the picture, to be drawn into it, to understand it as he wishes, and to feel the fantasy as his personal reality.
Biography: Born in Geneva, Switzerland, 1926 - in Israel since 1948 Photographer for 28 years at the Faculty of Architecture, Technion, Haifa. Ben-Arieh works mainly with the method of photomontage. His photographs are composed of a number of negatives, which were taken at various locations and times, and were assembled by him into final prints in the darkroom. In the artist's pictures there frequently appear female nude motives, which seem to connect themselves with imaginary scenery. The result is the creation of a differently reality which emerges from the unconscious and is related with the world of myths and archetypes. On the other hand, in his portrait pictures, as well as in the nude, the artist aims to express the personality of the models, as well as his own inner truth. EXHIBITIONS 1970 Beith-Sokolov, Tel-Aviv 1974 “Situation”, Israel Museum, Jerusalem – group 1979 “White Gallery”, Tel-Aviv 1982 “M. Valentine Gallery”, Paris 1982 “Shai Danon Gallery”, Tel-Aviv 1983 “Graphica 3 Gallery”, Haifa 1983 “Nikon Gallery”, Z?rich 1984 “Zoom Portfolio”, Paris 1985 “Camera Obscura”, Tel-Aviv 1985 “Galerie Claude Perrain”, Paris 1986 “La Femme”, ZOA House, Tel-Aviv – group 1986 “Nikon Gallery”, Z?rich - group 1986 “Camera Obscura”, Haifa 1986 “Fotografie Forum Frankfurt”, Germany 1987 “City Museum”, Nahariah 1988 “Moment Gallery”, Hamburg - group 1990 “Burgtheater Galerie”, Ratzeburg, W. Germany– group 1990 “Stara Galeria”. Warsaw - group 1990 “Galeria Biala LDK”. Lublin – group 1991 Karo, New Gallery, Haifa 1992 Grand Prix Photographique, Geneva - group 1993 Western Galilee College Gallery 2000 Technion - Haifa 2001 “Hottentot”Gallery - Haifa 2001 Centre Culturel Francais - Haifa Ben-Arieh also took part in international exhibitions: London, Southampton, Lincoln, Edinburgh, Moers, Jicin, Istanbul, Nicosia. In addition Ben-Arieh participated in five international photographic meetings in Arles (France). * * The National Library in Paris has acquired twelve photographs of the artist’s various exhibitions.
Site: Ben-Arieh Photographer
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