"I first came across Avital's work whilst enjoying a family supper in the home of the New York dealer, Iliya Fridman. He had just purchased Self Portrait Standing on Cardboard. For me, an instant envy and an instant wish to make a studio visit. As one critic wrote, Avital's work 'Flickers in the same fragile-fairylike-figurative-realistic territory in which something romantic is present and which embodies modesty as a temperament, a fragile stillness that must be protected from the terrible din of the current, the transient'. 
"Avital's studio, her own little kingdom of cardboard castles, gilded frames, peeling brickwork, flowers in crevices, cardboard boxes and tubes, relishing the everyday beauty of the every day. Once upon a time, kings lived in castles, knights fought for romantic glory, to gain their maiden's hand and few could be fairer than The Portrait of Adi as Maria Portiniari.  They say 'My home is my castle' but for far too many rootless, nomadic travellers that castle is made from discarded cardboard.

"On my first visit, I acquired a tiny working oil sketch of a Blue Lamp standing on a pile of cardboard boxes.  I left elated and humbled and knew that I would buy more. From her gallery in Tel Aviv, I added to my addiction by purchasing House on the Floor and most recently a beautiful impasto The Alfama Self Portrait


"Avital's draughtsmanship, her disciplined palette draws on her love of the richness and textures of her Renaissance mentors but honed right back to the sensitive colour tones that her time at The Slade School informs. Her work echoes the teachings of Patrick George, Euan Uglow, Andy Pankhurst.


"Avi Pitchon writes: 'Her use of a relief-like painting technique: the oil paint itself mixes the dried remnants left on the palette with fresh paint, packed and piled onto the canvas until it protrudes from the surface and takes on a relief-like sculptural quality. This features to various degrees in the paintings of flowers, cardboard boxes and self portraits'.


"Fragments of grandeur, peel back the layers, we can't live in yesterday but Avital shows us how yesterday's skins can live in tomorrow."


- Nick Crean

December 2020