There are subtle differences between a house, a home and a BAIT. It is not so much the dictionary definitions that interest me, but rather the variety of sensations and emotions that are the immediate response to each of these terms.
There is something about the work of Yoav that straddles the boundaries of the stereo typical icons and their profound emotional association. The basic, gray hollow building block, the ochre solid perforated block of “Curcar,” the simple linier outline of a house, a drawing of a house silhouette within a landscape, an iconic village all are easily labeled yet encapsulate a collective and personal richness which is far harder to define. All these works, like their literary definition may mean nothing yet within the works of Yoav, they entrap what is rarely achieved; a duplicity of universality and personal sensations.
Yoav’s Art rests in the domain of associations, in an almost a priori linkage between material, sensation and image, between silhouette, meaning and feeling. The images are reductive and iconic. It is perhaps due to their fundamental form that they manage to touch us. They may not resemble our house but they encapsulate within the fragility of their form a notion of a home, a collective memory of BAIT.
Yoav uses the most common of languages, primal, like prehistoric cave paintings, and yet his language is personal, encrypted, composed of secret and obscure associations which confound logical interrogation, yet are nevertheless undeniable. The power is there, in the line, in the memory of material and form, in the craft of a particular kind of visual storytelling.
The result is not the house of an architect, or the analytical or philosophical definitions of Bait, Building, Home, House, etc., but a clue to what we desire, an illumination of our common consciousness, and a link to our primal instincts.
Asaf Gottesman, Paris.
Interview with Yoav Ben Dov (in hebrew)