Books On A White Background by Aliza Levi

Another exciting exhibition was on display at The South African Jewish Museum. Books On A White Background by Aliza Levi is a photographic installation in which the artist explores a South African archive of books. The series, which looks at ethnographic representation, is encapsulated in its title: ‘Books on a White background’. This alludes to both the compositional presentation of the book spines floating on a white background, as well as the identity of the book authors and the artist herself. “I began this series by choosing books that reflected the assumptions and behaviour of the nineteenth century colonists, the persistent notations of self and other. I soon started to notice, that many of the titles were pertinent to today. A blurring of time and relevance, where views from a hundred years ago were intersecting with current attitudes and events. In this series I hope to raise discussion on both the past and present circumstances of the ‘post-colonial’ ”

Aliza Levi was born in Johannesburg. Levi studied Psychology and Anthropology at UCT , and graduated in Fine Arts in Durban. She exhibited widely in South Africa before spending thirteen years in Australia immersing herself in art making as well as teaching sculpture and photography, she has also has been facilitating art therapy groups, with a particular focus on refugees from Sudan.

Levi is currently living in Cape Town. Her work has been shown in Australia as well as in South Africa in numerous group and solo shows.