Jennifer Abessira’s practice and drive for creativity are grounded in a deep love for visuality and images. Uprooted from France at the age of seven, Abessira’s family moved to Israel where life would lead her to discover the power of moving and still images. Lost between her mother tongue and Hebrew, she took refuge in the Tel Aviv film library.
A student of history and French literature, her passion for the Bauhaus’s history led her to visit Berlin. The visual movement that emerged from the 1920s Weimar art school changed her view of her own city. In 2012, she created her Instagram account, which will become her studio. The platform allows her to document her life and organise the app’s flux through unique and inventive hashtags. Among other things, she documents the architecture and urban landscapes of Tel Aviv. While her practice would take many forms, Tel Aviv remains at the centre of her thinking and at the heart of her creations.
Her first series, #ElastiqueProject highlights her interest in the relation, juxtaposition and dialogue between images. At that time, Abessira developed a practice of hunting and reworking of found imagery gleaned from the internet. Abessira states: “The essence of Elastique is to constantly classify and arrange my life, which is dominated by an unstoppable flow of images. From a wider perspective, it can be perceived as an ongoing cultural archive.”
Playing around with concepts such as multiplicity, truth and authenticity, Abessira set aside the title of “photographer” in favour of “image creator”. For her, it was a way of introducing the outside world into her practice and challenging the classical hierarchy or values of found imagery. As she appropriates or re-appropriates through a multitude of artistic gestures such as drawing and the application of flat tints of bright colour such as in her #PinkDifferent series.
Navigating inspirations, such as Jazz, Russian Constructivism, Jean-Luc Godard and endless literary quotes, it is the colours that make up her work. Between counterculture and zeitgeist, Abessira’s practice is fundamentally linked to our use of the Internet and its ever evolving cultures. Abessira’s work proposes a virtuous, recycling cycle of images found and re-posted on the Internet.
Follow Jennifer Abessira on Instagram@jenniferabessira