Eran Gilat – Life Science

Exhibition from July 2nd to September 23, 2018

Eran Gilat’s “Life Science” series of staged nature photographs comprises meticulously organised and captivating images of still life motifs. The series is based on studio photographs of objects accompanied by living tissue from animal internal organs, marine species, mammalians and avians, usually laid on a heavy wooden table, left bare or draped with a tablecloth. Nature in Gilat’s photographs is derived from the animal kingdom – a fish, an octopus, a heart, a chunk of meat, strands of hair, or animal horn. Despite its appearance, however, the “living” in Gilat’s work is already in a post-mortal state, and his still life objects are no longer in use. Specimens for his staged photography are borrowed from meat and fish markets or museum collections. 

“Life Science” forces biological tissue into relatively pleasant, at times artificial scenarios, where he can contemplate disquieting issues of materialism, mortality, and erotica, corresponding with the complicated and intriguing category of "animal reminder" in the visual arts. The series also negotiates the immoral reasoning behind various shades of human violence, insecurity, and exile. We tend to describe violent human behaviour as animal-like, bestially revolting, associated with aggressive animal behaviour. However, Eran Gilat sees the animal world as dictated purely by survival rules arising from inexorably harsh selection processes. "No one will consider the employment of essential measures for the preservation of the species to be cruel; this was previously emphasised by Charles Darwin and recent eminent scholars," states Gilat. He believes that, in many aspects, we are inferior to the animal world in terms of moral conduct, while evidently being superior in our intellectual competence.

This solo exhibition at Galerie Huit Arles is produced courtesy of ChromaLuxe.

About the Artist

Eran Gilat is an Israeli neuroscientist and a dedicated fine art photographer. He received a B.Sc. in Biology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a D.Sc. degree in Medical Sciences from the Israel Institute of Technology and a Post-Doctoral Scholarship from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. His research has focused on the study of mechanisms underlying epilepsy, and the development of an innovative cure for this illness. 

Eran received his first SLR camera at the age of 13 and devoted himself to photography, in particular portraits, and street photography. In recent years, inspired by his longstanding confrontation with biological tissues and para-clinical constellations for the study of neuroscience, Gilat has focused in particular on still life and conceptual portraiture in photography.