Visual Arts

About Zak Shiff

Zak Shiff earned his B.Ed.F.A. from the Faculty of Arts, Hamidrasha, Fine Art Department (2015), his CFA in painting, and an MFA (2019) from Boston University with Exceptional Excellence. He lives and works in Tel-Aviv.

Shiff's work involves a dynamic of different materials bound together, evoking human body parts. His work examines how shifting shapes and layers influence our reality and imagination.

Shiff currently teaches in the Art Department of the Ben-Zvi High School, Kiryat Ono, Israel. He is also an instructor of private art classes for children and adults in his studio - “The Green Box.”

Shiff’s work has been exhibited in Israel and abroad. Recently, he participated in the exhibition “Experience 4,” curated by Rotem Ritov at the ZuZu Gallery, Emek Hefer, Israel. Earlier this year, he participated in the Fresh Paint Contemporary Art Fair in Tel Aviv, where he created an installation performance, “Household Damage,” curated by Raz Shapira. The work was a collaboration with Zak’s wife - dancer Lee Arbel. In 2020, Curator Sharon Toval invited Shiff to participate in a residency at The Lab, Tel Aviv. He has also exhibited his works at the Anna Zorina Gallery, NY (2019), the Boston Young Contemporaries, Bu's Faye G. Jo, and James Stone Gallery, Boston (2018).

Creating art for Shiff starts when he merges thought and action together.
One of the intriguing moments is tearing something down, reconstructing it, and transforming it into something else. To keep changing and experimenting with the endless possibilities of transformation. It is like a puzzle that does not have to be solved. It could come out with a sense of humor and a new aesthetic. The work celebrates awkwardness and inchoate unexpected accidents, moving as organic shapes on the one hand and fake majestic or shiny on the other.

A tension between hyper-awareness and intuitive gestures is essential to the process he continually develops. Shiff is attracted to an imperfection in things, which leads him to destroy a surface to the emergence of an imperfect figure, icon, or anything that generates a dynamic construction that keeps floating between materials. Drawing is an essential tool for organizing his thoughts. Shiff uses an automatic drawing technique that allows subconscious parts to reveal themselves on and underneath any surface. This freestyle technique of drawing allowed him to mark mental issues genuinely.
Play, improvisation, and humor are essential in how Shiff perceives studio practice. When he takes an object or any other matter, he questions his identity. The essence is constantly shaping itself and searching for a peaceful environment to call a contemporary home.

Zak Shiff

Visual Arts

Ramat Hasharon, Israel

Featured News