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Sculptor of Light and Shadow - Kaya Deckelbaum at Florence Biennale 2015

  • FLORENCE, Italy
  • /
  • September 04, 2015

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Kaya Deckelbaum, Sculpture “En’light”, 1,20 x 0,50 m (HxW), 2015
Kaya Deckelbaum

by Dr. Barbara Aust-Wegemund

Directed by the curator Professor Rolando Bellini, the 10th Edition of the Florence Biennale takes place during the 150th anniversary of Florence Capital of Risorgimental Italy, October 17-25, 2015. The international show with the theme “Ethics: DNA of Art” presents more than 25 events in public spaces in addition to the main exhibition event at Fortezza da Basso hosted in the historic center of Florence.

The Florence Biennale, an official partner of the United Nations Program “Dialogue among Civilizations”, continues to follow the principles of the Ethical Charter of the New Millennium Artists. Since 1997 the number of artists, works and quality of art has grown tremendously, making the Florence Biennale one of the most important contemporary art exhibitions in the world, recognized by internationally renowned artists such as David Hockney, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Marina Abramović, who have received the prestigious International Award for Lifetime Achievement “Lorenzo il Magnifico” at Florence Biennale.

This year Kaya Deckelbaum, living in New York State, has been selected to participate at Florence Biennale. The artist with Bulgarian, Israeli and Canadian heritage is one of the world's foremost multilevel artists and sculptors working in the public space, with a range of projects spanning the globe. The play of light and shadow, reality and mysticism is essential to her new series “En’light” created especially for the Florence Biennale 2015.

Kaya Deckelbaum’s new series “En’light” created especially for the Florence Biennale 2015
Kaya Deckelbaum

Over the past years, Kaya Deckelbaum, who is an associate member of the National Sculpture Society in the US, has produced a rich body of work, among them a sculpture for the permanent collection of the Reuben and Edith Hecht Museum, University of Haifa in Israel.

By combining conventional and unconventional materials (wire-mesh) and media (light), Kaya Deckelbaum creates hybrid works of intricate energy and psychology. Explaining the artistic concept, she mentions: “It is my intention to show the effects of light and shadow expressed through my sculptures as if you were looking at two works: you see the sculpture itself and a riveting image behind it. The title of my installation "En'Light" meaning enlightenment is shown through the play of light and shadow. This effect creates a sketch on the wall which adds a 4th dimension to my sculptures. It is a unique aspect of my art.”

The projection of light rays has long been a source of fascination for artists and scientists, apparent in Leonardo da Vinci’s interest in the semblance of life projected into the dark chamber of the camera obscura.

But Kaya Deckelbaum is fascinated by the magical, visceral power of projected light as action, as a performative medium in itself. By posing conceptual dualities in her work - inside/outside, front/back, light/dark, color/non color - she seeks to connect with the viewers on an intuitive level. Therefore it is the viewer participation and the object/viewer relationship which completes Kaya Deckelbaum's multilevel work.

Florencce Biennale 2015
Florence Biennale

No doubt, this contemporary sculptor of light, shadow, illumination sketch is creating a 4th dimension – and finally a 5th by evoking emotion, stimulating intellectual engagement in Florence.

Florence Biennale 2015
October 17 - 25, 2015

Fortezza da Basso
Viale Filippo Strozzi 1
50129 Firenze, Italy

Phone. +39 055 3249173
Fax.     +39 055 333540

Daily 10.00 am – 8.00 pm


Friday, October, 17, 2015
10.00 am, Media Preview
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion

11.00 am, Press Conference
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

12.00 am, Opening Ceremony
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

3.00 – 6.00 pm, ELIA International Conference (European League of Institutes of the Arts), “Renascent Creativity: towards a European path in arts and cultural education” curated by Art and Restoration Salon of Florence.
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

Wednesday, October, 21, 2015
6.00 pm, Lecture curated by Gregorio Luke – Carlos Gardel
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

Friday, October, 23, 2015
4.00 pm, Lecture curated by Gregorio Luke – Michelangelo
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

Sunday, October, 25, 2015
4.00 pm, “Lorenzo il Magnifico – Award” Ceremony for the participating artists
Fortezza da Basso, Spadolini pavilion, Theatre area

The International Award “Lorenzo (de Medici) il Magnifico” is given to deserving participating artists for each of the following artistic categories: painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography, installation, video, digital art, and mixed media.

8.00 pm, Gala Dinner

Kaya Deckelbaum

Dr. Barbara Aust-Wegemund
Art Historian

About the Author

Dr. Barbara Aust-Wegemund, born in Zurich/ Switzerland, is an Art Historian and Managing Director at Art History Consulting (AHC), based in Hamburg (Germany). She studied Art History at Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel (Germany), University for Foreigners Perugia (Italy) and London Guildhall University (UK).

In 2002 she earned her PhD from University of Kiel with a Dissertation on Modern Sculpture: “Sources of Inspiration.The Meaning of Nature in Henry Moore´s Late Work.” Barbara is an art historian who has written widely on modern and contemporary art. Her essays have been featured in monographs, exhibition catalogues, e-zines, journals and the online Editorial Department of Goethe Institute Inc.

Tags: sculpture

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