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Private belongings are material testimonies of personal histories, which evoke feelings, thoughts, and ideas connected to past experiences. In the context of war and survival, such objects become both comforting and hurtful signifiers of a world that has been lost, or is no longer accessible. In many cases, they are kept and cherished, even achieving a certain degree of sanctity, while also operating as a continuous reminder of the devastating past. Yael Bartana’s video Tashlikh (Cast Off) serves as a platform for both perpetrators and survivors of genocides or ethnic persecutions to confront their personal, material links to the horrors. Inspired by the Jewish custom of ‘Tashlikh,’ in which sins are cast into the depths of the sea, Bartana’s work generates a ritual that consists of the deliberate discarding of objects as a means of psychological liberation.

Yael Bartana, born in 1970 in Kfar Yehezkel, Israel, is a visual artist and filmmaker who lives and works between Berlin and Amsterdam. Her films, photography, and sound works explore the imagery of identity and the politics of memory. Central to her works are aspects of society interweaving past and present, reality and fiction, the conceptual and the emotional, as well as the implications of terms such as ‘displacement,’ ‘assimilation,’ or ‘homeland.’ Bartana represented Poland at the 54th Venice Biennale and has had numerous solo exhibitions around the world. She has also participated in leading international exhibitions.

Production: Ingenue Productions Ltd, Tel Aviv; My-i Productions, Amsterdam
Camera: Mick Van Rossum

Running time: 12 min
Language: Without dialog

Photo: © Yael Bartana

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
  • Logo des Programms NeuStart Kultur