Art@Site Yigal Tumarkin Holocaust and Revival

Yigal Tumarkin


Holocaust and Revival

Rabin Square
An upended triangle standing on its point.
Last week's nomination of sculptor Yigal Tumarkin to receive an Israel Prize seems sure to trigger yet another round of bitter recriminations. Tumarkin is an enfant terrible in the Aloni mold, with an equally long track record of gratuitously offensive behavior."
From the 2004 London Jewish Tribune article by Jonathan Rosenblum, "An Israel Prize for Wagner?
Tumarkin's first name is variously spelled Yigal, Ygal, and Igael.
Among Tumarkin's best known works are the Holocaust and Revival memorial in Rabin Square, Tel Aviv and his sculptures commemorating fallen soldiers in the Negev.
Tumarkin is also a theoretician and stage designer. In the 1950s, Tumarkin worked in East Berlin, Amsterdam, and Paris. Upon his return to Israel in 1961, he became a driving force behind the break from the charismatic monopoly of lyric abstraction there. Tumarkin created assemblages of found objects, generally with violent Expressionist undertones and decidedly unlyrical color. His determination to"be different" influenced his younger Israeli colleagues. The furor generated around Tumarkin's works, such as the old pair of trousers stuck to one of his pictures, intensified the mystique surrounding him. One of his controversial works is a pig wearing phylacteries (Tfilin).