Artist Statement


Relli De Vries, 2014


A Cross Section View

To see through and to look at.

To site the place and to set apart its components. To unravel.

Unravel and space out of its details in order to understand.

To identify the marginal; from within and from without; through the winding and expanding language of art towards life.

Intend, be aware of the body’s knowledge of its parts, its back and front.

Remembering what it saw and knew.

To closely examine movement of tiny and solid parts;

The expression of their shivering disintegration, their withering away.

At the same time remember the reflection of the distant, mute, liquid edges.

To note, in order to be present, allowing one/two/multi-dimensional lines.

But without delay concurrently listen, record in real time the essence of the strata, their fracture and appearance, their ties and contexts.

To hold tight the gaps between thought and action, between hierarchy and gravity.

To stay at the passages and at the barriers.

To listen to the matter of existence, to rethink its frailty and power,

To let it lead.

And for a while to allow the relational elements rest together, side by side, in peace.


In my work I focus on questions of place, its time-space components and their geopolitical, physical and cultural aspects. The place refers in particular to where I live and work – Israel/Palestine.

I observe optical and conceptual viewpoints in order to create continuities of spaces and identities. I am intrigued by the constant tension between knowledge and the gaze, and the failure of measuring to provide a solution.

My work is fundamentally knowledge-dependent.

As such I allow the components that become my carriers to lead me, and at the same time to be taught by their language and behaviour, in order to signify the signs of my journey.


My projects are mostly long-term:


A. Cross section “East of the Mediterranean – Latitude 32” (at the “heart” of Israel-Palestine).

In this project I mark a cross section – a latitudinal line from the Mediterranean eastward. It is the opposite of the physical and experiential-conceptual structure of the space. It is a long and narrow land and so are its landscape patterns. This geo-morphological structure reacts to the western coast, and the longitudinal orientation is in the north-south direction. In that way the latitudinal line I draw becomes ‘adversarial’. As such it allows to observe the space alternatively, and to find along its span geo-political widthwise reading points that locate the associations between geology, the life in it and on it.

Reconstruction in Three Parts

Cross section

Orientatzyia 2

Relocating the Costal Road


B. The Society of Plants

The project focuses on the presence of the community of plants in space. This presence provides knowledge on the life and behaviour of plants, on relational influences between place, geography, demography, culture and identity .I examine the circumstances in which plants grow and their botanic structures which they create in order to survive. At the same time they reveal the way they are used and exploited for marking political and ethnic identities

Among these plants are Gundelia Tournefortii, Salsola Kali,

Phragmites Australis, Aloe Vera, Agave, Eichhornia Crassipes.

The Embarrassment of Plants

The Akkub and the society of bad weeds

Planting Plan

Aloevera Upside Down – Monitoring Station


C. The Heaps of Construction and Destruction

The heaps of construction and destruction – that lay inside and outsides our lives as time measuring situations – and the activity happening by or within them, create a map in a space in addition and subtraction (digging and filling), a man-made quarried substance tectonics. In my work I attend the timeline of these components, I mark type of heaps, the way they are used or neglected, the way they become a part of the landscape. The heaps solidify into patterns in space, becoming paved roads, houses, road blocks and fences.

Heaps also make me rethink a paradox, language and data (such as in computer systems). This is relevant to an interdisciplinary group of researchers I have established that aims at working on a collaborative project (to be announced shortly).



Physical, Economic, Political

The Bent Plane