MembersJoshua Borkovsky: Vera Icon

Joshua Borkovsky (66) studied at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem, and is part of the academy’s faculty since 1979.

By Tsvi Sadan |
Borkovsky
Photo: Flash 90

He was awarded the 2013 Dizengoff Prize for painting.

Borkovsky’s work is characterized by phantasmagoric imagery that gives the impression of an optical illusion, among other things. This form of art, says the artist, allows one to ask the question what a real image is, and whether or not it exists at all. The 2011-2016 Israel Museum exhibition titled “Behold the Man” featured five paintings from the Vera Icon cycle, representing the five stages of the Annunciation (Luke 1:26–35): disquiet, reflection, inquiry, submission and merit.

The Vera Icon cycle, which includes more than 30 versions of the same abstract painting, looks like a pattern from a pale green Tartan cloth with a vivid cross. The five Annunciation paintings are painted with the same distemper on gesso on wood as that used in iconography, which effectively turns them into non-icons.

Vera Icon (true image) refers to the legend of Veronica’s Veil, which speaks of a woman who gave Jesus her kerchief so he could wipe the sweat from his face while carrying his cross. When Jesus returned the kerchief to Veronica, his face...

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