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Gabriel Cohen
Large Israeli Naive Art Screen Enamel Oil Painting Jerusalem Old City Folk Art

About the Item

JERUSALEM, Vielle du David, (City of David) Superlac (enamel) painting on paper, hand signed, titled and dated. Provenance: Michael Hittleman Gallery Los Angeles. Gabriel Cohen, (French-Israeli) Self taught, Naive painter was born in Paris in 1933, to parents from Jerusalem with a father who studied the kabbalah. Throughout World War II, the family hid from the Nazis in Paris. Images of Nazi soldiers appear in several of his paintings. In 1949, when Gabriel was 16, the family returned to Israel. They managed to save enough money to move back to the quarter where both parents were born: Ohel Moshe in Nachlaot. Gabriel served in the artillery corps and after the army, went back to live in his parents' house and earned a living polishing diamonds. The head of the polishing plant, who noticed his employee's artistic skill, allowed him to paint during work hours. He once asked Cohen if he could draw a tiger. Cohen drew him a tiger. And he did a lot of sculpting and painting on glass. He also loved to play the guitar, especially flamenco style. Critics say he is one of Israel's greatest naive-style painters. Along with Shalom of Safed, Kopel Gurwin and Natan Heber, He is renowned as one of Israel's greatest living naive-style folk art painters, recipient of the Jerusalem Prize for Art (1987), a permanent entry in encyclopedias of naive painting, who exhibited his work not only in Israel, but also in Paris, Venezuela, Denmark and Germany; the same Gabriel Cohen whose colorful , bold Naif paintings were exhibited at the Jewish Museum in New York in 1987 alongside works by Marc Chagall; the same Gabriel Cohen about whom curator and art scholar Gideon Ofrat says, "There is no questioning his greatness." He has shown in Paris on the Rue de Rosiers in the Marais. His impressions of his journeys, mostly imaginary, yet some real, are expressed in Cohen's paintings. Huge, colorful canvases rich in precise detail and fantasy, in which he paints the Eiffel Tower and the Russian steppes or the vistas of Paris and the Tower of Babel "In my opinion, it's also because the Tower of Babel has some kind of phallic, erotic meaning, but also because of the internationalism, of the mixture and confusion of nations, which is an essential element in Gabi Cohen's work," says Gideon Ofrat. There is no superlative that has not been lavished on Cohen's work by art critics, since he began showing his paintings at age 40, All the art critics seemed to agree at once that Cohen is one of the greatest naive-style painters in Israel. Their counterparts abroad seconded this view. About a year and a half ago, Zadka organized a show for Cohen at the Jerusalem Artists' House. The Tel Aviv Museum bought a painting of Gabi's and so did the Israel Museum, and several artists bought his drawings. He is a great, great painter. There is no painter who is more of a symbolist and illustrative artist than he is. As a painter myself, I admire him." The Yom Kippur War in 1973 sparked an artistic breakthrough for Cohen; it was at that time that he began to sit on the sidewalk after his work as a diamond polisher and paint. Not long afterward, in early 1974, he did a painting he called "Moses on the Mountain." Ruth Debel, of the Debel Gallery in Ein Kerem, passed by and saw it on the street. She asked how much he wanted for it, and for the first time in his life, he realized that his work had financial value. His first show was at the Debel Gallery in 1974. The response was overwhelming. Cohen was immediately declared a genius. His paintings at the gallery were purchased and he continued to create new paintings. That same year, he was invited to take part in a group exhibition of naive artists at the Kunsthaus in Zurich, and a year later, his work was included in a traveling show of naive-style artists from Israel that was exhibited in Denmark and Germany. Soon after that he was invited to be part of group shows in Venezuela and at the Tel Aviv Museum. Cohen had four solo shows at the Debel Gallery. Awards And Prizes 1987 Jerusalem Prize for Painting and Sculpture 1999 Shoshana Ish-Shalom Prize for special contribution to art, Jerusalem He has exhibited alongside all of the Israeli great artists. included in the Naive Art Group exhibition Gvanim Art Gallery, Jerusalem Rubin, Rachel Roman, Yitzhak Zarembo, Leah Moscovitz, Shalom (of Safed) Steinberg, Michael Denisov, Salva Harbon, Haim Cohen, Gabriel Chanannia, Joseph (Jojo) Local Hero: Portrait of the Arab in Israeli Painting The Gutman Museum - The Writers House, Tel Aviv Blum, Ludwig Pann, Abel Sima, Miron Janco, Marcel Allweil, Arieh Arieli, Mordechai Schloss, Ruth Geva, Tsibi Glotman, Yehoshua (Shuka) Cohen, Gabriel Kna'an, Ahmed Gutman, Nachum Rubin, Reuven Reeb, David
  • Creator:
    Gabriel Cohen (1933 - 2017, French, Israeli)
  • Dimensions:
    Height: 22.5 in (57.15 cm)Width: 35 in (88.9 cm)
  • Medium:
  • Movement & Style:
  • Period:
  • Condition:
    good. minor wear. studio condition. please see photos.
  • Gallery Location:
    Surfside, FL
  • Reference Number:
    1stDibs: LU3827257882
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