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Naftali Rakuzin Jane’s Library   Exhibtion runs From 5th June to 11th July 2014 Monday to Friday From 10 am to 12.30 pm and 2 pm to 6 pm Week-end by appointment


Born in Moscow in 1948, Naftali Rakuzin, whose father was a celebrated illustrator, studied Fine Arts with Moses Chasanov and then graphics at the Polygraphic Institute of Moscow. He worked essentially as an illustrator until his departure for Israël in 1974 where he settled in Jerusalem. In 1980, he won the Feininger Prize and in 1982, came to Paris where he still lives and works. Among his numerous group and one-man shows since 1975, perhaps “le Triomphe du Trompe-l’oeil” at the Grand Palais in 1993, “Beauty in the book” at the Israel Museum in Tel Aviv in 2003, “Library of the artist” at the Pop/Off Art Gallery in Moscow and at Sims Reed Gallery are the most noteworthy. This is his third show at Jane Roberts Fine Arts.

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ONE-MAN SHOWS 2012 2011 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2001 2000 2000 2000 1999 1997 1996 1993 1992 1988 1984 1984 1981 1979 1978 1977 1975

Jane Roberts Fine Arts, Paris Galerie Bineth, Fresh Paint 4 Contemporary Art Fair, Tel Aviv Sims Reed Gallery, London Pop/off/art Gallery, Moscow Galerie Bineth, Tel Aviv Jane Roberts Fine Arts, Paris Pop/off/art gallery, Moscow Artspace Gallery, Jerusalem L’Association Philomuses, Paris Galerie Nabokov, Paris Librairie-Galerie « Art et Littérature», Paris Librairie Lardanchet, Paris L’Association Philomuses, Paris Galerie-Librairie Graphes, Paris Artspace Gallery, Jerusalem Centre d’Art et de Culture de la rue Broca. Espace Rachi, Paris «Office in Tel Aviv », Tel Aviv Haïfa Museum, Museum of Art Dianne Beal Contemporary Art, Washington D.C The Moscow Palette” Gallery,Art- Manege 96, Moscow “Grewal-Marine S” Gallery, Paris Paesaggio Gallery, Hartford, Connecticut Schröder- Ebbers Gallery, Bersenbrück, Germany Fred Lanzenberg Gallery, Brussels James Mayor Gallery, Paris Sha’ar Zion Library, Beit-Ariela, Tel Aviv “Parkway Focus” Gallery, London Rudolf Jüdes Gallery, Burgdorf/Hanover “L’Angle aigu”, Tel Aviv Artist’s House, Jerusalem


A Deconstruction of reality


Naftali Rakuzin has chosen the book as his recurrent artistic theme. Beyond our initial, captivating, visual surprise, the artist plunges us into the realm of pure paint. On the shelves, books stand shoulder to shoulder in an order to which the different thicknesses of the spines instill a movement compounded by the vertical lettering, whose common denominator is the History of Art. A painter of a quiet life, of immobile reality, of tranquil Still-Leben , Rakuzin builds up book architectures, without depth, all fully frontal, frightening in their methodical accumulation. With the astonishing precision of their rendering, the realism with which the line and the colour mingle to describe what is after all a rather ordinary subject, he introduces a haphazard quality to his composition while building a meticulous construction that leaves nothing to chance. Out of this highly technical exercise, as fascinating as it may be, emanates a highly personal language. It is because each painting is an exploration of pure matter, variations on an infinite theme. The artist is dreaming in a sensual and rich medium, oil paint, in which he manages to express the troubling presence of the book, the tactile quality of paper and their exhilarating presence when bathed in the changing light. The rigorous work of the paintbrush, which is preceded by a drawing in coloured crayons, is nourished by the books themselves, treated in a manner which deals less in the obsolescence and the wear and tear of time than the soft and equal light that bathe the various spines. On studying the artists’ names on these books, one sees that he has chosen elements of the History of Art that surrounds Jane Roberts daily, since it is her art library that Rakuzin has chosen to paint here. This library, suddenly displaced and isolated from its context, takes on the appearance of a “Vanitas”, whose remains are reborn to our eyes and minds. Rakuzin’s bindings take on forms and volumes, a painterly alchemy that expresses both the mat and shiny, where the rhythm of the letters give us a mere suggestion of what might be inside. This vocabulary allows us to concentrate on the paint itself and here, Rakuzin certainly pursues the tradition of the figurative still-life where symbolism plays a major part and where distance is expressed by its very proximity  Lydia Harambourg, Membre correspondant de l’Académie des Beaux-Arts Critic and Art Historian

Jane’s Library I 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library II 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library III 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library IV 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library V 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library VI 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library VII 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library VIII 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library IX 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library X 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library XI 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library XII 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library XIII 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library XIV 2014 Oil on canvas 15 x 18 in.


Jane’s Library XV 2014 Oil on canvas 18 x 15 in.



Naftali Rakuzin Catalogue