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Threadsun

Nassima Landau Foundation is pleased to announce Guy Yanai’s solo show Threadsun. The show will be held side by side with an adjoining solo show by Los Angeles based German born Friedrich Kunath.

Threadsun is Guy Yanai’s first solo show in Tel Aviv in a decade. The title Threadsun comes from a poem and book by the Czernowitz born poet Paul Celan. The poem and book ( his last book published during his lifetime ) are actually titled Threadsuns, Yanai has taken the plural out of the invented work to insinuate one thread of sun coming down.

Paul Celan lost his parents and family in the Holocaust, Celan himself was in a labour camp between 1941-44. Despite all of this he insisted to continue writing in German, despite speaking 8(!) other languages. To write in the language of the murderers of ones parents is no small feat. It is with this in mind that we consider his invented words in German, Threadsuns being just one of the many. Paul Celan drowned himself in the Seine river in Paris in late April 1970.

It is this impossible paradox, this irreconcilable state that Yanai is so interested in.

How can one paint faced with the current atrocities, how can one write as profoundly and beautifully after living with such loss like?

The works in this show, all from 2024, except one work from 2020 that was reworked in 2024 span a wide range of subject matter. The mundane, even dull, and traditional subject matters of Western Painting. Landscapes, flowers, portraiture, interiors. Nothing here is attempting to be “groundbreaking” or “controversial”, which might in turn make the exhibition just that.

Yanai continues in his trajectory of the past few years of work. Recurring sources such as the films of Eric Rohmer (of which Gene Hackman said “ I watched a Rohmer film, it was like watching paint dry), the writing of Marcel Proust and Michel Houellebecq, and the oeuvre of artist Cy Twombly permeate the work and feeling of the painting.

These paintings remind us what we are fighting for and what we are living for. Small mundane moments of beauty and poetry. Even now among the horrors that have been surrounding us since October 7 and before.

Threadsuns

above the greyblack wastes

A tree-

high thought

grasps the light tone: there are

still songs to sing beyond

mankind.

Paul Celan Threadsun translated into English by Pierre Jori

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