Haim Steinbach

b. 1944, Rehovot, Israel


Haim Steinbach
Haim Steinbach, Family Ties, 2007




Back in the mid-seventies, while teaching an art course and discussing customs of presenting and viewing objects in our culture, it occurred to me that objects in and of themselves may be considered a material for art. The idea for art that I was thinking of was not in the sense of the Duchampian "ready-made" but rather in the commonly shared social ritual of collecting, arranging, and presenting objects.

Since the late 1970s Haim Steinbach has been making work that focuses on the selection, arrangement and presentation of objects, above all everyday objects. He is concerned with exploring the psychological, aesthetic, cultural and ritualistic aspects of objects as well as their contexts and possible meanings. In order for the objects to coexist and to enhance their interplay, Steinbach produces structures and framing devices to accentuate correspondences, differences and narratives. Presenting objects ranging from the organic to the mundane, the handmade to the mass-produced, Steinbach underscores the objects' identities and inherent meanings as cultural and ethnographic artefacts and as consumer commodities.