Avital Cnaani received her MFA from Bezalel Academy of Art and Design and her B.E.D. from Hamidrasha School of Art. She received the Israeli Ministry Culture Award for Young Artists in 2009 and was an America-Israel Cultural Foundation scholarship recipient in 2004, 2005 and 2008.
Since her first solo exhibition in 2004, Cnaani has had four solo exhibitions in Israel, including at the Herzelia Museum, Petach-Tikva Museum and Gallery 39. She has also had numerous exhibitions internationally, including at the Municipal Gallery in Bremen Germany, Kuandu Museum in Taiwan and Harlem Studio in New York.
Cnaani’s works are derived from the human body, but they create images of primordial animals, pieces of frayed land, vegetation that climbs and falls, heads whose shape escaped them. The references to nature and geography in the works are tied to the Israeli political landscape: the mountain as a place of settlement, control, division, a piece of land that represents alienation, impenetrability, and the taming of naïve nature. The political is present in the destructiveness, in the spreading drawing power. The presence of corpses in her work points to the memory of life that exists in them, and reflects vitality and death that occur simultaneously.
“[AICF] has supported my search for identity as an artist. They supported my B.E.D. and M.F.A. studies, which define me as an artist.”