The white stripes on the wall, installed in different parts of the gallery, are inspired from a visit to Walter Gropius’ house in Lincoln, MA, built in 1938. The treatment of the walls in that house is unique as there is a clear intention not to leave any walls white or bare. This manifests in the large window walls that surround the house, the glass bricks that split rooms, and my absolute favorite–vertical lines hung in low relief on walls throughout the house, in the entrance, corridors, and the bedrooms including the master bedroom. On these vertical lines, matching the various shades of the walls, hang pictures, paintings, branches and more. This gesture is ever so slight, yet it changes completely the wall and what is on it, and ultimately how I perceive the wall, and every wall that came before and after that.
The works in the show are concerned with the perception of our surroundings, covering and revealing, interiority and exteriority, domesticity and monumentality, style and substance. A folding screen splits the space, and mounted on it is a large-scale print of a window looking onto a mountainous landscape. Vertical shades intersect this image which is composed of different layers, each photographed separately and flattened together to create a new interior setting.
Another source of inspiration for the works comes from traveling in desert areas in the western part of the US. The desert landscape, with its different stone textures, colors and abstract formations are juxtaposed with the geometry, that’s at the heart of the modernist vocabulary I grew up with, in my hometown of Tel Aviv. Finally, the crossword puzzle, the ultimate grid with its playfulness and inner logic, the sum of all of its parts, receives a round shadow by way of light.
The crossword is a structure whereby clues are given to create meaning from knowledge and experience. It’s also a gift, a shared secret, and a picture on the wall.
Ofra Lapid was born in 1982 in Tel Aviv. Lives and works in NYC. She earned her MFA from Hunter College in 2015 and her BFA from Hamidrasha School of Arts, Israel in 2009. Her works have been shown internationally including at The Center for Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv, (2012); Les Nuits Photographic, Pavillon Carré de Baudouin, Paris (2015), Museum of Art Haifa, Israel (2016), among others. She participated in artist residencies across world including Schoppingen Artists Foundation, North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany (2012); Atlantic Center for the Art, New Smyrna Beach, FL (2016); Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT (2016) among others, and is currently an artist in residence at Hercules Art Studio Program.