Maayan Amir & Ruti Sela at Center for Contemporary Art / Tel Aviv

Exterritory: Maayan Amir & Ruti Sela
Image Blockade 

Center for Contemporary Art
2 Tsadok Hacohen St. (near Kalisher St.)

Tel Aviv

July 30 – September 26, 2015

“Image Blockade” is an exhibition of new works by Maayan Amir & Ruti Sela that focuses on the intersection between the visual, political, and legal. The works, made within the framework of the Exterritory project, explore the ties between sensory perception, insubordination, censorship, and advanced technology and their links to the control of images.
The works raise many questions such as: How is the sensory perception of those who are obliged to keep information confidential over time affected? What are the limits of transparency when it comes to activism and documentation? What happens when images that may incriminate their creators are withheld from public view through legal means and cannot be used as evidence?
The exhibition title, “Image Blockade,” is taken from a video that recently premiered at the New Museum Triennial in New York that focuses on a neurological experiment made in collaboration with Weitzman Institute scientists investigating the influence of prolonged exposure to classified material on individuals’ brains. This work will be on view at the CCA along with other new artworks and research by Exterritory.
Initiated by Amir and Sela in 2009, Exterritory is an ongoing art project dedicated to encouraging the theoretical, practical, and interdisciplinary examination of “extraterritoriality,” i.e. being excluded or exempt from the standard system of law within a designated area. The project uses the notion of extraterritoriality to critique power structures and re-imagine practical, conceptual, and poetical possibilities.
The works in “Image Blockade” move beyond the straightforward geographical and judicial notions of extraterritoriality as it pertains to people and spaces to consider how the concept may be extended to regimes of information, representation, and practices that may produce “extraterritorial images.” The works presented at the CCA offer a riveting look at attempts to regulate images and what that might mean for shaping political worldviews today.
About Exterritory:The Exterritory project takes shape through art works, research, and varied interventions, collaborations, and public events. Exterritory has presented work and collaborated with numerous institutions, including the Kadist Foundation in Paris, HKW in Berlin, the Union of Comoros Biennial in Moroni, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, and the New Museum in New York amongst many others. In 2011, Ruti Sela and Maayan Amir received the Young Artists award form UNESCO for their work on Exterritory. Research by Exterritory has been published in books by Sternberg Press (New York, Berlin) and Multitudes (Paris), and has been reviewed in academic journals and catalogs such as the Colombia University Journal (New York), Transfer (Oxford), Camera Austria (Vienna), and others. In 2015, an anthology on Exterritoriality edited by Amir and Sela will be published by Punctum Books (New York).
Exterritory is part of an ongoing collaboration between Sela and Amir whose collaborative work has been presented in exhibitions such as the Biennale of Sydney, the Istanbul Biennial, the Berlin Biennial, Manifesta 8, and at venues such as the Tate Modern, Centre Pompidou, Jeu de Paume, Art in General, the Ludwig Museum, and the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, among many others.