This is how I created eight works of art for the Tel Aviv Hilton
The call caught me 10 meters off the ground on a crane, examining the installation for the Migdal Ha Emek Memorial Wall.
“You have a meeting tomorrow at the Hilton with the Belgian architect who is designing the new function hall”, she is meeting with artists for the purpose designing the foyer.
The thought that goes through my mind is … another audition? I have just finished a tiring week of installations, how am I going to get to Tel Aviv on Friday at noon… I will have to leave from Migdal Ha Emek… shower and get organized, dressed and looking good, not tired (I had been working for two weeks supervising the workers going up and down on the crane).
Ok … Friday noon arrives, I get back from Migdal Ha Emek, clean off the residue of glue from my hands to look fresh, with sparkling eyes when I talk about my work, open to whatever the architect will want….
I sink into the Hilton armchair…. At long last I can relax my body….
The Belgian architect starts explaining… so it will be there in the corridor leading to hall no. 2, with a continuous window overlooking the sea, and on the other side a glass wall with a huge wooden frame holding glass squares, a wall separating the corridor and the foyer to hall no. 1. She is asking me to create a double faced piece that floats in the glass frame that will be the same on both sides, both on the corridor side and the foyer. Ok, and the size of the frame is about 1.4 x 1.4 meters.
Compared to the 100 square meter Memorial Wall I am busy installing at this time it sounds more like a small mock-up.
I pull out my sketch book, the architect sketches the frames and how she wants the art to be floating… and in my mind the wheels are spinning; I draw a rendition of an initial idea, we page through the album I have brought with me (my book), she is enthusiastic, I see which photo is catching her eye, where her eyes are shiny… and that’s it. I feel that this is where a new romance with my art works is just beginning.
She loves my initial idea, I leave my card and she says she will let me know… and that’s it.
I hear nothing for two or three months, I wonder why Hilton Israel needs help from a Belgian interior decorator, when there are so many amazing talents in Israel.
Three months later… a call from the Hilton CEO’s secretary…”We have been looking for you for a month, we lost your business card (there is as yet no internet), and by change we met someone who knows someone who knows you, so fortunate that we found you, the secretary sets up a meeting with Israel from the hotel who will come to your studio…”
Israel arrives, wow…. It’s the Israel I danced slow and rock and roll with at parties at high school… the meeting runs to nostalgia and just before we part, two meetings with two architects who want to meet me… the Belgian architect and one from New York.
That is, to shorten the way from New York to Israel the Belgian architect takes half the time to get here, she sets everything up and then the finalizations is done with the with the architect from New York.
I got to the meeting with a 1:10 model with tiny lights inside, they were excited, very enthusiastic, wonderful, they say, one model is enough, they rely on me to create the other sculptures as I see fit….for the four frames.
So in the end, I created four sculptures for hanging on the poles that were placed in the centre of the frames, and when I arrived to meet the architect to start hanging the installation, it turned out that the glass they had used in the frames was frosted… milky!
What can be done? It was decided that I would place the four sculptures in the Foyer. The other four sculptures that were supposed to face the corridor, there was no point in hanging there, so I was given a free hand at deciding where the other four sculptures would be place. I went back to the studio and decided that I would make the four I had not made yet, different. That is how I came to install four sculptures in the entrance to the function hall. Instead of four sculptures at the Hilton hotel, there are eight….