The SA Jewish Museum is honoured to be hosting the exhibition ‘Undying Entanglement’ by Cathy Abraham which opened on the 25th of August 2013.
This is the second in a series of exhibitions at the SAJM entitled “Who am I?” in which Jewish South African artists explore their identity and their heritage.
Abraham’s work, and particularly this exhibition, fits very neatly into this theme. Her art is deeply rooted in who she is. Much of what you see and experience are items from her past and repurposed by her art. Like all of us, Cathy is a product of the sum of her experiences.
A seminal experience that has driven much of Cathy’s art was the loss and destruction of her family home. This calamity, while tragic, proved to be a cathartic experience. As the physical grounding of her world collapsed, it opened for Abraham a new world view. In her own words, “The destruction of the house was a powerful symbol of all that had been lost. The loss of illusions of home, security, marriage, religion and relationships all tumbled down like the house”
Aspects from the demolished house have been repurposed in the exhibition. Detail previously unnoticed - the backs of photo-frames, frameless windows, broken glass and childhood drawings - are items that had surrounded her, yet remained invisible until revealed via destruction. Cathy found beauty and truth in these unseen or unnoticed items.
In Undying Entanglement Abraham draws back the curtain and reveals the beauty and truths of her unseen world. Themes of family, of loss, of identity and of hope all play out as Abraham attempts to answer the question “Who am I?”
Undying Entanglement will be on show at the SAJM from 25 August to 25 October 2013.