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Words Without Letters: Ted Gahl, Avner Ben-Gal, Ridley Howard, Gideon Rubin, and Guy Yanai

Does the sea have a door?, is there a house with no room?, are there words without letters?

These are some of the questions that my son Romy asks me. He has no idea how much his thinking influences me, a thinking that is not yet rooted in the limited possibilities that life inflicts on us, even the most poetic of us.

Letters without words, yes, of course. James Joyce took the furthest right? Finnegans Wake, an unreadable book that has stretched works and letters to the fullest. But words without letters? A form with no structure? Just the question as a thought is enough for me.

Painting without marks of paint. Food without ingredients. Can this magic be made? Is this what Romy means? Is this what he wants to know? Can there be something made without ingredients of that thing? Is this what our ultimate aim is? What am I to say?

Is this is what painting now is? It has to be a form with no structure, a word without letters, letters without a word, two new words that make a third. The irreconcilable, the holding of opposing poles simultaneously. Painting now is free, and maybe in order to resonate it has to dissolve and hide its inner structure in order to regain it. 

Here is a show of five painters, who make visible what resists visibility.

Guy Yanai, August 2015