Efrat Natan


efrat natan
Painter, sculptor and performance artist.
Born in Kfar Ruppin, Efrat Natan lives and works in Tel Aviv. In addition to her artistic work, she is also a curator, mainly at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.
From 1968 to 1971 she studied with the artist and art educator Raffi Lavie. Natan began her artistic career with a number of performances dealing with the relationship between the private experience and the traumas of Israeli society in the early 1970s.
Among her most important works is the “Head Sculpture” – a performance in which she built a T-shaped wooden sculpture that she wore as a mask on her head. Nathan wore the sculpture on the day following the IDF parade in 1973 and marched throughout Tel Aviv. 
In May 1974, in the “Milk” performance, she poured milk on the stairway of the HaMidrasha – Faculty of the Arts to the sounds of the howls and wailing of “Stimmung” by Karlheinz Stockhausen playing in the background, as an opposite to the saying “It's no use crying over spilt milk.” 
In 1979, she created the performance “Work on the Roof” situated on the rooftop of her apartment in Tel Aviv. It was a kind of theater of objects, mainly records and t-shirts.
In an interview with Raffi Lavie in 1990, he expressed great appreciation for Nathan's works and noted their originality. “Her works have a balance of social-political involvement and personal expression. In other words, at a time when there was a great wave of desire on the part of the artists to be political, her works were neither superficial nor simplistic.”
In 2002, Efrat Natan created the sculpture "Swing of the Scythe" which was purchased for the permanent collection of the Israel Museum. It is composed of 12 scythes arranged in a semi-circle, each scythe leaning on the next in a manner imitating the mowing stroke. The work is based on the tension created by the dual meaning of the scythe, being the symbol of the Israeli pioneer and the Grim Reaper at the same time.
In 2006, her work “The Dream of Gender Equality” was presented at the “Apropos les Demoiselles” exhibition at the Petach Tikva Museum of Contemporary Art, marking 100 years of Picasso's work “Les Demoiselles d'Avignon.”
In 2007, she displayed the work “Summer in Winter” at the Rosenfeld Gallery. The exhibition featured a number of works in black and white. In some of them, the undershirt remains intact; in others it is torn and disintegrating, with only parts of it left. It is displayed as an object, together with a baby crib covered with a mosquito net.
In 2008, Efrat Natan, together with Dr. Amitai Mendelsohn, has curated the exhibition “Real Time: Sixty Years of Art in Israel.”
In 2011, she displayed the “Tent” in the Israel Museum, where a white tent was attached to a high black wall using strings, and appeared to float in mid-air. Unlike a tent firmly pegged into the ground, it was suspended upside down.
In 2016, a retrospective exhibition spanning more than forty years of artistic creation by Efrat Natan was held at the Israel Museum, and entitled “Whitewash and Tar.” 
Selected exhibitions:
2016 – Efrat Natan: Whitewash and Tar, Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel.
2007 – Summer in Winter, Rosenfeld Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel.
2006 – White Shirts in the Window, Kibbutz Beeri Gallery, Israel.
2002 – Winds, Ha'Kibbutz – Israeli Art Gallery‎‏, Tel Aviv, Israel.
2002 – Old & New Works, the David Yellin Academic College of Education Gallery, Jerusalem, Israel.
1979 – Work on the Roof, apartment building at 91 Shlomo HaMelech st. Tel Aviv, Israel.
2013 – Sandberg Prize for Israeli Art, Israel Museum, Jerusalem.
2009 – The Mifal HaPais Award for Plastic Arts.
2006 – The Minister of Science, Culture and Sport Award.
2006 – The Minister of Education and Culture Award for Plastic Arts.
2002 – Creativity Encouragement Award, the Ministry of Science, Culture and Sports.
1979 – Beatrice S. Kolliner Award for a Young Israeli Artist, Israel Museum, Jerusalem.