Yael Bartana

Yael Bartana - Vane

Yael Bartana, Trembling Time, 2001, video

Yael Bartana’s Trembling Time was filmed in Tel-Aviv on Soldiers’ Memorial Day, a day of remembrance observed in Israel and heralded by sirens across the country. Filmed from a high vantage point, the scene is played out on a busy four-lane highway. The layers of moving images reveal cars coming to a halt and the occupants opening their doors, standing by their stationary vehicles, pausing and slowly driving away. Today, in the perverse time we inhabit, the sight of stopped traffic suggests a grave situation – looking at the film one wonders what catastrophe these drivers can see ahead of them, what has induced their paralysis. Is it fiction, or reality, and, if fiction, how could a powerless artist arrest the flow of cars, goods and people?

Text by Charles Esche.