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Citizens

Curator: Neta Gal-Azmon 6.4.2017 - 5.8.2017

 A deserted parking lot hosts a discussion of weighty issues regarding human rights, the principle of ignorantia juris non excusat (ignorance of the law excuses not), sovereignty and proper public order, citizenstate relations, freedom of expression and protest, etc. Danielle Parsay, who arrived at the parking lot to perform an artistic act, unaware of its being illegal, found herself in a confrontation with the police which ended in detention. During the unexpected event she was forced to delve into her citizen rights and duties. The role of the representative of the law is assumed by a young Special Patrol Unit policewoman who likewise gropes her way through these concepts in an authoritative tone, as befitting the occasion. The two hold a stammering, rather entertaining dialogue, a fidgety dance revolving around topics which seem too heavy for both, while a "phone buddy" — probably the policewoman's direct commander — enters the picture every now and then.
What started out as an artistic act, becomes a ludicrous, brave and purposeless defiance by a young artist who confronts the authorities in an attempt to bring basic civics concepts into sharper focus. The policewoman: "This place is a public area, but it belongs both to the municipality and to everyone… just an area, an area that is used." Parsay is confused. Her question: "Who am I threatening?" remains unanswered. The policewoman: "Like, you came here to conquer the world?" With the announcement of the artist's detention, the filming acquires the character of candid camera, a subversive act which renders the viewer an accessory to the offense. At some point, only background noise can be heard, since the camera is buried deep in the artist's bag and the picture is blackened. Finally we get to see, for one jumpy moment, the metal floor of the patrol car and the bars, as an illustration of the officer's words: "Welcome."


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