Plasticine

Plasticine is my favourite and base material. It’s the most direct and intuitive way for me to give form to my thoughts, feelings and bodily sensations. It’s probably because I started working with plasticine together with my mother at around the age of four. Today, I use plasticine to make quick sketches; I see them as three-dimensional drawings. I use plasticine as preparatory work for papier-mâché or ceramic sculptures.

Because the plasticine is an ephemeral material I always take photos of the sketches. Sometimes I use the photos just to document my artistic and thought process. But often I intentionally create plasticine figures for staged photographs. All my portraits, for example, are made of plasticine (see Anonymous Glossy or Passportraits). Thanks to the material’s soft, waxy consistency, the plasticine figures have the quality of real flesh or skin. Because it is possible to mix plasticine, I use it as if it were oil paint; it’s my special technique to create 3D ‘paintings’. I also use plasticine to make illustrations for the stories of others and stop motion animations. (scroll down for plasticine illustrations)

2017, Illustrations for the story: Uninvited and Disenchanted come to Town: A Modern-day Fable, written by Nat Muller. The story and illustrations were presented during a one-day symposium, part of the curatorial programme Why Is Everybody Being So Nice? De Appel. Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, June 2017)

2010, The book of Tamar. Self-published book. Staged photographs of plasticine figurines. Text written by Dan en Ruti Zehavi.

The Book of Tamar is a collaboration with my father Dan Zehavi, who wrote the text with his girlfriend Ruti. The book tells the story of a baby girl, from the first moments of it conception until her first birthday. The book was a gift for Tamar, my father’s first granddaughter, and my first niece.

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