2013 · AMÉN
Museo Cabañas (Instituto Cultural Cabañas), Guadalajara, México


48 Hours

Since de 60's decade of Dusseldorf's school of photography of the Becher, Gursky, Struth, Höffer... Until Cindy Sherman, Stephen Shore or Philip Lorca Dicorcia, amongst many others, a great number of creators have used photography as an artistic support that coexists in equality of circumstances and ranges, with the more traditional media such as painting and sculpture. The expressive and narrative capacities of photography have, for several decades, nurtured the world of contemporary art with important discourses.

If someone would set themselves with the project of photographing one of human history's most significant cities in 48 hours in order to obtain a portrait of it, with all of its edges, folds and hues, one would think it is madness; however, Gaal Cohen who is a prolific photographer, who goes everywhere with his camera, tireless, obsessed with not letting any element of interest escape, who achieves to transmit the closeness he had and obtained, in every picture he took. This hunter of light, moments, traces, glances and instants, will answer with the same emotion as someone who arrives at Jerusalem for the first time in their life.

His personal experience (Gaal Cohen was a resident of Jerusalem during his youth) has been translated in a capacity of abstraction that needed no extra time, since in an eye blink, he manages to invite us into his rampant vision of the city, always from respect and inclusion, he opens a window to the three cultures that build the social tissue of the sacred city.

It is a way of meeting with his past, the individual reconciliation is the first step for social reconciliation which is indispensable to obtain the so longed for Peace that would bring such good to a zone where the ravages of human confrontation do not seize to cause so much suffering to thousands of people.

Gaal invites us to see ourselves in the eyes of each other in order to better understand ourselves. By means of his portraits he invites us to observe from a peculiar vision this significant and transcendent city, where three religions that represent millions of people around the world live together, the Christian world, the Jewish world and the Muslim world.

More than present to us the recurrent images that witness the rich history of Jerusalem, Gaal Cohen opens a door to observe everyday life, the trained eye of this self-taught photographer, steps aside to introduce to us reality without modifications or great composition resources that distort a simple and natural understanding of day to day life in the sacred city.

The intention here is to open a door to us and place us in the three Jerusalems, so that we are reminded that there is only one and we are all one.

José Dávila