Itay Zalait Protest Art
From Wikipedia: "Itay Zalait (Hebrew: איתי זלאיט; born: April 21, 1979) is a multifaceted Israeli artist and lecturer who deals mainly with painting and sculpting. He rose to prominence and public notoriety mainly through his series of artworks during the protests against Benjamin Netanyahu which, according to Zalait, are not fueled by a political stance, but rather by a desire to test the boundaries of artistic expression and to awaken a conversation and discussion in regards to themes such as freedom of expression, pluralism, and tolerance."
Zalait's phallic male art and gay culture themes are somewhat an expression of him being a true LGBT ally, supporting gay rights in Israel.
In his own words:
"The search for freedom and self-awareness were always at the heart of my work.
As I learned through my personal self-awareness work, as well as through my professional life, the human consciousness is designed from the same materials in all human beings: dreams, fears, wishes and psychological conditioning.
I am a multi-media artist who creates sculptors, installations and paintings using a wide range of materials and techniques. I uses humor and sarcasm to point out automatic, absurd and hidden aspects of life which deal with freedom of choice.
Materiality is at the heart of my work. I'm “hunting” for objects such as discarded toys and pieces of wood, and they provide the raw materials for his next project. The process in the studio is one of going over, feeling and flirting with these materials until a spark of inspiration ignites a new work of art. I often cut, brake, deform, and burn the materials in order to test the boundaries of familiar objects. The way I see it, this process creates a new order that is an implementation of freedom of choice.
The process of searching is integral to my work as I "scavenge" and search for materials which have their own history embedded within them, and then facilitates their transition into a new stage of existence. Like a metamorphosis of sorts. The process of searching and scavenging has been an important element in my personal life as well, and beyond my artwork. A search for the real and authentic amongst a sea of fakeness, falseness and fraud, as well as a constant inquiry into the boundaries of freedom of choice is my driving force. This essence is reflected in my art, creating a visual and psychological space where in a blink of an eye the observer receives a crisply sharp perspective on our crooked existence and moreover of possible alternate truths/paradigms available for our consideration."