The video leap of faith starts with a shot of the artist wearing a suit, standing on the window’s edge, getting ready to make the leap of his life to the wide open space. The artist is hesitating, having difficulties in creating a momentum to jump, but eventually jumps. Surprisingly he freezes horizontally, while his feet touch the window’s edge – homage to the known work of Yves Klein “Artist jumps into the void (1959). When the shot opens up it appears that the window from which the artist was afraid to jump is just a few feet above ground. The camera stands still presenting a grotesque and surreal image of the artist hanging between heaven and earth.
The camera focuses on the artist’s point of view, who wants to break through from the inside to the outside. The artist is presented trying to jump out of the window, like Icarus who tried to climb up and reach the sun, when his ambition is to overcome gravity and his own fears with the help of willpower and courage. The artist chooses to do so in an exhibitionist way, through a huge window, that allows everyone around to see the struggle of the artist and watch his fears. By the leap through the window the artist eliminates the physical barrier as he breaks through. The surrealist position of the artist where his feet touch the sill and his body is suspended between heaven and earth merger the inside and outside.
In the video the artist chooses to use the window in an unusual way, in order to achieve his goal. The artist’s fear, arising from a possible failure, leads to hesitation in accomplishing his goal. The failure, however, is not so painful as the window is just a few feet away from the ground. The work criticizes two characteristics of the human nature. One is the fear form failure and social criticism that can paralyze and prevent breaching borders, while in many cases, like in the work, such fears are only in the person’s (the artist) eyes, as the fall is not so painful. The second is wining glory at any price, where like in the work – the act seems heroic, in the artist’s perception, while it seems grotesque in for the viewers.
Shahar Marcus (Israel 1971) is an interdisciplinary artist who works primarily in video, performance and sculpture. In his works he relates his body to organic and perishable materials, such as dough, bread, juice or ice. His relationship to the materials examines the position and the role of his body as both human and creator. His choice of perishables likewise highlights the nature of art and life
Marcus had exhibited in many exhibitions around the world including Tate modern in London, The Israel and the Tel Aviv museum in Israel, The Charlottenburg kunsthhalle in Copenhagen, The Moscow and Poznan Biennale and other venues in Germany France, Italy and Usa.
Shahar Marcus – Tel Aviv Israel