By Danush Lachman
"When we got home and went into the hut, I stood for about ten minutes, leaning against the stove. It seemed to me that if I lay down... you would curse me for resting and not wanting to work. ...And I lay still until evening, and my eyes closed. ... Then I turned my face to the wall, turning my back to the world. ... And a moment before I died, I fell asleep. And it's strange that a person falls asleep a moment before his biggest sleep, but that's how it was. I fell a sleep for a moment and I dreamt a dream ... and from that short sleep with the dream, I crossed over into the big one, of which I can no longer say a word."
Hanoch Levin, Requiem, scene 5.
As a child I regarded adults according to how active or inactive they were. Embodying the opposite and opposing ends of this spectrum were my Grandma Yonah and Grandma Thea. Grandma Yonah did not cease even when movement became painful and difficult. Her doings were in sacrifice though also existentially essential. For hours she sat weaving, sewing and embroidering, until arriving at a precise product. Otherwise, when the result was insufficient - she undid the strings, rolling them into a tight coil which seemed to take its shape as if by magic. At times I became a part of this coil. Sitting, my hands held out- a (passive) device- on which the undone strings were wrapped into a new order. In contrast, Grandma Thea was lacking in doings and thus to my eyes, was without meaning. As her death neared I found her shriveled, withered, distracted. Wrapping damp cloths around her stomach- already sensing the malignity within it. Unraveling on her unkempt bed she would send me with the bundle of damp strips to re-wet them. When wrapping herself again, it seemed as if she was burying her treacherous stomach. Like a rehearsal for her enshrouding.
The sculptures in the series "Concavity" are images of person and object. The images do not focus on characterization but on a situation. The moment in which the (elderly) figure and the object (chair) become one, and the setting becomes a scorching of the figure's memory. Gradualy, the figure vanishes, dissolves and ceases all action. The synthesis of figure and setting leads to the moment of disappearance as a preparation for death. The moment of death does not exist as an actual point of time. There are demarcated areas of before and after, but the point itself does not exist as an independent event. It is only a transition defined through the continuum of the before and the after ; a transition that these sculptures attempt to approach. The decline into the bedding is a passive movement, which slows into near frozenness, thus appearing to last for an eternity. Then, from within this frozenness, the image, suddenly, is of the moment which follows. The synthesis of figure and setting occurs also, through the figure's being only partially represented. This scarcity of limbs point to the slow disappearance following which the body seems to have been an illusion . On the other hand, it also points to the residue; the scorched memory which remains at the end of the process. The unity of figure and setting is also emphasized through the sculpture's material nature. It is made of one material - wax - which coats and wraps it into a single unit. The wax does not conceal the shape of the chair, it covers it entirely into one piece; breathing , corpulent and coarse. Thus the material personifies the object no less than do the figure's features.