Gerard Marx, Jerusalem Shots, 1976

Gerard Marx (b. 1941) is one of the first artists to create conceptual art in Israel. Marx collaborated with Joshua Neustein and Georgette Batlle on the “Boots” (1969) and “Jerusalem River” (1971) projects. In the “Jerusalem Shots” action Marx photographed sites in different parts of the city – the Western Wall, Al-Aqsa Mosque, Mea Shearim, and the walls of the Old City. In 1976, during military reserve service at Kibbutz Merom Golan, he set up the photographs in a shooting range and together with other soldiers shot at them with M16 rifles and Uzi submachine guns, and the splatters of mud painted them in hues of gold. The work was created as part of the “Bringing Art to the Border Art” event which was held on 15 January 1976 in which Neustein took part with his “Territorial Imperative”. “Jerusalem Shots” is perhaps the most striking example of action out of the dual position of artist and soldier, which challenges both realms: art and combat.