Toward a Transversal Reading of Art and Politics in Israel

in Israel Studies Review
Author: Mor Cohen 1
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  • 1 Manchester Metropolitan University mor0ante0@gmail.com
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Abstract

The 2011 Israeli protest for social justice marked a change in the responses of Israeli citizens to political and social matters. The ways in which art and social change intersected during the protest, and the emergence of art collectives following the events, call for an understanding of the relation between art and politics in Israel. This article suggests an alternative reading of socially engaged art in Israel. To this end, I use Félix Guattari’s notion of ‘transversality’ and Jacques Rancière’s theory on the ‘aesthetic regime’ to highlight significant periods where art and politics have intersected in ways that have challenged Israeli art historiography, often neutralizing the political within an artwork. By using a theoretical framework that emphasizes notions of hybridity and the blurring of boundaries, I make new connections between times, places, and practices that go beyond the binaries of center and periphery, mainstream and alternative, and aesthetics and politics.

Contributor Notes

MOR COHEN is a PhD candidate in the Postgraduate Arts and Humani ties Center at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her research examines contemporary art collectives working in mixed cities in Israel, the production of third spaces through socially engaged art practices, and intersections of art and politics in Israel. E-mail: mor0ante0@gmail.com

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