From the press
Dream in Landscape
Linked Landscapes
Black & White
ABC of Birds
Dream in Landscape

bird and rock

Dream in Landscpe, Alon gallery, Jerusalem, 1980
Opening remarks: Dr. Ziva Amishai-Maisels.

This is the artist’s first solo exhibition.  Exhibited are pictures in mixed water technique.  In contrast to the simple color etchings which occupied a small part of the shelf, and epitomized her earlier paintings (exhibited at Hutzot Hayotzer, 1976), here the white page is entirely covered by flecks of amorphous, monochromatic color.  Continual observation reveals a hidden fogginess which characterizes the artist’s attitude to her work during this period.

These paintings express much more than the eye casually sees.  Among the apparition of trees or stones which provide the subject of most of her paintings, are hidden different and strange figures; some of which are threatening, as if the artist, without intending, gave freedom to all the demons that sneak out from her brush.  Additionally, fear of a lack of aesthetic fulfillment, a distortion of harmony, which, during this period was already at its peak, led to her using a very limited, if not unassuming, palette of colors – different shades of brown, a smattering of different colors only evident in a small portion of the paintings particularly when describing flora, and here and there different shades of olive green.  Most of the paintings contain no lines, which led, eventually, to the awareness that in these harmonious and serene painting on the cusp of the abstract and lyrical, there lacks of point of origin. The eye of the observer does not find a place to grasp, and wanders to and fro over the surface of the picture.  The feeling is that the artist deliberately struggles for the picture to be obscure and that no one interpretation is dominant, similar to a Rorschach test which is understood  according to each individual’s view.  This is especially prominent in the picture to the left – “Rocks in Autumn” 1980, 30x22.5 cm.  In contrast, the picture to the right, “Bird in a Field” 1980, 30x23 cm clearly suggests a landscape and trees but one can also find figures which are not discernible upon first glance.

From the Press: 

“Dream in Landscape”:
Liat Polotsky at the Alon Gallery
Hapalmach 51, Jerusalem

The artist is a native Israeli, Bezalel educated, and participant in a number of exhibits. This is her first solo exhibition, titled, justifiably “Dream in Landscape.” The works on are on paper, by and large water colors (but also ink) with stylus or paintbrush, consisting of predominantly brown shades. These works demonstrate a great delicacy and extreme refinement.  Polotsky professional level is mature and her technique developed.  Her style is convincing, but may possibly exhibit a slight lack of backbone.

Miriam Tal
Criticism in “Yediot Aharonot” November 1980

"…in 1980 held her first exhibition at the Alon Gallery, in which she interpreted her visions of dreams in landscape, using a mixed watercolor  technique combining figures, animals and demonic creatures that can only observed after long examination."

Hello Israel
Exhibitions in Jerusalem
April 1983



way of man

Artists House, Jerusalem, October 1981

This exhibition included a geometric wooden structure painted in industrial colors with integrated mirrors.  The effect of movement was created by means of many shades of a single color on the background of a complementary color and through mirrors which reflected the face of the passer-by, thus giving the illusion of movement.

The exhibition expressed the view of looking at life as intersections of various roads. Our lives flash by with the intent to achieve something in the distance - abstract and usually unattainable, replete with obstacles, struggles, and ups and downs.

A description of the way the modern world struggles is expressed in the game between the shapes and colors and through their symbolism.  The war of survival is expressed in the struggle between the rigid squares and the flexible circles – an angular triangle as opposed to a circle with a soft line such as in the picture to the left, [“Man Road,” 1982 64x64 cm].  In the picture to the right [“Contrasts” 1981, 68x70 cm] the game is played out between the colors and their complementary colors, which give the feeling of physical rejection due to their close proximity to each other, which, in turn, creates an experience of tension and excitement

From the Press:

Liat Polotsky, Artists’ House
Shmuel Hanagid 12, Jerusalem

Steps that lead to nowhere; the conclusion of a life’s race between four walls of ashes: these, and even less dismal trajectories are the subjects of the exhibitor.  The exhibits consist of colored objects in which mirrors are  embedded. The visual effect of these works is that of a reflection of objects which in turn make up the works within the mirrors. This, to a certain degree, is the principle of the kaleidoscope, although movement is not achieved by shifting the object. Represented is an illusion of movement, produced as the observer’s point of view changes.

These works, therefore, are “op-art” manifested, in part, by bold colors. They are not, abstract works as is acceptable in this field. Their  theme   is built on the contemplation of the formula “know where you come from and to where you are going.” This is heavy philosophical baggage that is no professional, and certainly not given to detailed, convincing expression by visual hints. To negate this essential flaw, found in these works are sophisticated, entertaining effects and even visual values which are worthy of our attention.

Nisim Mevorach
Ha’aretz November 1981

Liat Polotsky
It’s Possible Like This, Too
Artists House

The beautiful paintings in delicate water-colors that Liat Polotsky formerly created, were exhibited last summer at the Artists Association under the auspices of “Yarid Hutzot Hayotzer” in Jerusalem, drew my attention to this artist.  This new exhibit, in “The Artists House” establishes that one of her works, “Possible Like This, Too” is correct in its drastic change of style.  The large hall in which her works are exhibited holds one’s attention due to the bold reds, blues, purples, and yellows of Liat’s painted wooden panels, on which she created her works. Her use of mirrors as part of her work is a welcome additional innovation.   And this one work, the size of an entire wall, only adds to the eye’s fascination.

One cannot judge Liat’s work with the waive of a hand; in light of the fact that several years separates the creation of this work, begun in 1973 and continuing until the moments before the opening of the exhibition, they were not created as one piece. One needs to relate to each individually. It does not matter if each exhibition is not identical, for the common idea connecting them is strong  and is the reason for the exhibition. The use of mirrors as part of the creation, allowing the composition to continue as an illusion, is not new.  Robert Smithson, an American, did this during the last decade, when he positioned mirrors beside piles of salt chunks, and created from already prepared nature  a creation which prolongs itself.  The Israeli Buki Schwartz, who resides in New York, exhibited at the Juli Mi Gallery in Tel Aviv two or three years ago works which appear to be exact copies of Smithson’s but were presented as his original idea. There is no shame in being influenced, particularly if the purpose is to produce, with the help of dated ideas, something fresh and different.

With Liat Polotsky, the use of mirrors is legitimate and positive, especially when she produces works which substantiate her personal urges and ideas as she, herself, is emotional and very influenced by nature;  more than what one would think with just a quick glance at her clean, geometrical  works, and color lacking nuance. All is sharp and smooth, emotion steeped in the very essence of idea in each of her works, and it is worthwhile to consider the names she gives them.

If in her earlier works, more than in her series of exhibited works at the Artists House, there is evidence of a technical ease, Polotsky’s style improves, with a cleaner execution in her more recent works. Roads with traffic light and personal and spiritual connotations are the subjects of this exhibition. One can only imagine that if she continues to concentrate in this style that she has chosen, Polotsky will reach great heights with these abstract, geometric works.

Alisse Blitental
Maariv 1981

The third show, by Bezalel graduate (66) Liat Polotsky  in title Drachim (highways? Roads?) Brightly painted wooden wall and floor pieces symbolize roads, movement and traffic light and other patterns of urban imagery. Other tonal and hue graduations suggest the passing of time or the season. Bright flat colours are employed...

Meir Ronnen
The Jerusalem post magazine



forest and woman

Norah Gallery, Jerusalem 1992

This exhibition presents aquarelles from the years 1990-1991.  Some are done against a landscape and others from the memory of landscape.  These works express the atmosphere and feeling of mystery which exists in nature and particularly in Jerusalem and its surrounding hills.

In the picture to the right [“Woman and Rocks in Landscape” 1989, 23.8x16.5] one can see how the memory of landscape and imagination are connected.  With a superficial glance, it is possible to see the rocks which are found in the mountains around Jerusalem; but a deeper look reveals additional layers.  In the picture to the left, painted in nature against the backdrop of the Jerusalem Forest [“Jerusalem Forest” 1991, 57x35 cm] one discerns ambiguities of reality and imagination in the area painted. In these two pictures, painted in different places, an essence is revealed that, although unlike any realistic photograph of the forest, still contains additional layers.


missing urope

“33x33 Present Situation” 
Group Exhibit, Artists’ House, Jerusalem

I came to oil painting out of lack of choice; I wanted to paint a very large painting for my  dining room and it became clear  not only that there was no paper large enough, but even if there were, the delicate effect of my water colors was inappropriate for a 210x120 cm size painting.

In light of this, I decided to attempt oil painting, a medium which I had abandoned since my days as a student in Bezalel.  In order to first sense what it would be like to work in oils, I first drew on small canvases. In my initial attempts in oils, I tried to draw exactly as I drew in water colors.  In order to achieve an effect of translucence, for example,  I dipped my brush in a vast amount of oil paint, just as I would have done in a great amount of water. The result was paintings with many runny, random, splotches of paint which, amazingly, resembled the random splotches I would get from watercolors except that the exposed canvas did not at all resemble paper, and therefore I was dissatisfied.

Very quickly I came to the realization  that it was impossible "to coerce" the technique and that this type of color, from the beginning, demands a different concept of painting. In the years previous to my oil paintings, I had dabbled in computerized painting. These digital attempts forced me to accept as legitimate the bold colors of the computer which were very different from the pastoral watercolors I had engaged in.  This, in turn,  led me to not recoil from the bold colors of the oil paints and I allowed myself to use the saturated colors without fear. In order to be as free as possible from the dependency on delicate aquarelle, I purposely used thick layers and bright colors which clearly depict the paintbrush’s movements.

The group exhibition “33x33 Present Situation” of the members of the Society for Painting and Sculpture in Jerusalem which opened January 2000, allowed me, for the first time, to present these paintings.  The four small paintings depicting abstract landscapes in bright colors received accolades and encouraged me to continue to paint in oil.

I see in this exhibition an important turning point in my artistic career, beginning with the year in which I decided to paint almost entirely in oil.  With time, I found my own style that again drew me close to the delicate colorfulness of watercolor, in which the brushstrokes are not visible.

Today I again paint in water color, but it is important to note that in light of my prolonged engagement in oil, watercolors created during this time and even afterward (especially in the miniature paintings) do not resemble at all the watercolors painted previously. In those paintings I found the golden path between delicate watercolor with open spaces that I had painted until the beginning of the 90s and the loaded, heavy, oil paintings of the end of the 90s.

The following criticism concerns the above painting [“Longings for Europe” 1999 oil on canvas, 25x29 cm]. I chose this picture because, as I have already pointed out, it is one of the first paintings done by me in  oil on canvas. As such, it is interesting to compare it to paintings from other years.

From the press

Criticism of the group exhibition “33x33” Present Situation:
Kol Ha’ir 7.1. 00 pages 83-84
David Rap
Artists without Boundaries
Tzvi Tolkovski sent an open invitation to all the artists in the city inviting them to create a work for a new exhibition.
There were no artistic dictates, concept,  message, or boundaries (except for one).  The result was one of the most important, modern exhibitions shown in the country.
(General comment: From among the 80 artists represented in the exhibition, Rap refers only to twelve  artists (including displaying their pictures in color); I am included in this group).
The  brilliant pictures of Liat Polotsky are titled “Longing for Europe” and realize this on a visual level in their proximity to the English painter Turner.  For  Polotsky, the use of water is not merely impressionistic, but rather expressive, and the ships that bobble in the water remind us, perhaps, of the stealthy, immigrant ships which arrived in the Promised Land and  rejected any relationship with the true homeland, completely forsaken.


Linked Landscapes

linked landscape

Linked Landscapes
Artists’ House, Jerusalem July 2001
Linked Landscapes II
Artists’ House, Tel Aviv, November 2001

The exhibition in 2001 at the Artists’ House in Jerusalem was the first solo show in which I exhibited paintings of oil on canvas.

I started painting in oil, as I have already pointed out, in my work in small formats in which I painted semi-abstract landscapes similar to pictures exhibited in the previous year in the group exhibition “33x33 Present Situation.”

On the three walls of the gallery were hung three groups of pictures and between them small, single, additional pictures (up to 35x35 cm in size).  In each one these groups, the framed pictures were closely grouped one right next to the other, thus creating one new picture.

This great assemblage (see “Linked Landscapes” above) consisted of twenty-four pictures, each  30x20 cm in size, which nearly covered the entire wall.  The painting “Twilight” 35x24 cm was one painting exhibited in the hall and even printed on the invitation to the exhibition.  One can see it among the selected pictures at the opening of this site.

The invitation to the exhibition states:

Imagine that you are travelling by train for several days and see the changing landscape through the window.  A wandering glance in the window leads to the mingling of different places at different times of the day and everything becomes harmoniously linked, connected by different pieces of severed, colored landscape, continually changing from one color to another.

The traveler passes through the broad landscapes; arid deserts, green fields, trees, and flowers, until everything bands together in his brain to become one big  picture. It is this feeling that I wish to convey in the present exhibition.  The observer who passes through these paintings of diminutive proportions is aware that the changing landscapes found side by side create, in the end, a perfect harmony of their own.

From the press

“Linked Landscapes” Artists House in Jerusalem
“Kol Ha’ir” 3.8.2001
Albert Suissa

Liat Polotsky. Good oil painting from a good name.  A happy soul, enthusiastic, enchanted by the wish-wash of a windshield wiper on a stormy day.  Flashes of landscape go by, wandering by the internal galaxies, innumerable lightening-swift scenes that change to attachments of color, sound, and feeling that are enchanted images of an inner turmoil.

Sometimes, this is the point of rage from which breaks a wave of feeling that creates an abstract painting of vehement expression; but it is the touch between sky and earth that creates a wave of excitement that transcends the width of the painting, organizes the daring, traditional shades on the entire platform until one is desperate from differentiating between water and water, between light and burning fire, and mostly between mania and depression.

It is there that rests the intoxication of color and depth that floods one’s consciousness. 

Black & White

jerusalem forest

Black-and-White, 2001
Artist's House Tel-Aviv

A group exhibition of the
Israel miniature art society,

This is a thematic exhibition of the members of the Israel Miniature Art Society. As opposed to previous exhibitions, this exhibition was not based on any specific theme except that each and every member was required to use a palette consisting only of black and its derivatives – shades of gray. The subject that I chose was corners in Israel, and the painting presented here is “Forest in Jerusalem” 2001 8x7 cm. Critical material applies to this picture.

From the press

In an adjacent gallery, small black-and-white drawings and prints (misnamed miniatures) by a score of participants, are best represented by Liat Polotsky's crisp ink-and-wash illustrations emulating oriental brush painting;….

Gil Goldfine
The Jerusalem Post Newspaper, 16.1.2001


ABC of Birds

two birds

ABC of Birds
Biblical Zoo, Jerusalem  March 2003-2004
Ussishkin Museum, Kibbutz Dan April 2004-2005

The exhibition “ABC of Birds” consisted of illustrations of birds.

Twenty-four birds, the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet, were painted in water color in a realistic a style.  The exhibition was first presented in the Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem to accompany the children’s book written by Azaria Alon “ABC of Birds,” published by Kibbutz Hameuchad in 2003.

the front cover of the book


the back cover of the book

The watercolor paintings of birds in the exhibition are the same as those that appear in Azaria Alon’s book An Alef Bet of Birds recently published by Kibbutz Hame’uchad. The exhibition was first presented at the Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem and this is the publicity which the Zoo issued:

“A new exhibition of paintings by Liat Polotsky will open from 3.12.03 at the Noah’s Ark Visitors’ Center.
The exhibition is based on a book by Azaria Alon, first published forty years ago, in which 24 birds are presented (from a variety of 360 species found in Israel) in black and white photos. The artist, Liat Polotsky, who loved the book but wanted to see it in a slightly more colorful and pleasant version, illustrated all of the birds which are included in the book according to exact instructions of the author. As such, a new, colorful, publication of the book was released last New Year. The birds in this volume can be seen in Israel – in the fields, mountains, by water or in the desert. The exhibition will close in the middle of March.”

After the exhibition closed at the Biblical Zoo, a large portion of the birds were then exhibited at the Bet Ussishkin Museum for the Preservation of the Hula Valley – the very birds that can be seen in the Hula Valley.


From the press

From “Chaim shel Zahav” Culture Supplement of “Hakibbutz” “Anashim” column
And also “Ba’emek Uvaramah” – Regional Council Paper, Jordan Valley, Dec. 2004

A special experience awaits visitors to the Bet Ussishkin Museum on Kibbutz Dan. Alongside the permanent collection, is a fascinating exhibition of birds, the work of the artist Liat Polotsky. A great likeness between the painted birds and reality is evident, and for good reason: the great talent of this artist and the fact that all of her paintings are based on photos from the well-known book by Azaria Alon, An Alef-Bet of Birds.

Liat Polotsky relates: “the illustrations for the book took hold in my mind 40 years ago, when I was a third year student at Bezalel.  During the same time, I had the original book of Azaria Alon, with its black and white photos, and alongside them the text that humorously and colorfully described native birds. Although I loved the text and birds, I was sorry that they were in black and white, and decided to draw those that I especially loved in color.”  

A couple of years ago, long after the birds had lain in a draw almost 40 years, Liat approached Alon and suggested a re-release of the book, this time with color pictures. Alon agreed, and after great labor, Polotsky completed drawing all the birds from the original book. The renewed book was published a number of months ago by Kibbutz Hame’uchad. All of the birds from the book are presented in this exhibition, alongside explanations originally written by Azaria Alon.  The exhibition will be open to the public in the coming months. 

From “Al Hatzafon” Regional Council Newspaper of the Upper Galilee
Culture and Art Supplement
Animal Kingdom
Currently opening at Bet Ussishkin, the Museum for Nature and Landscape at Kibbutz Dan, is a unique exhibit of bird paintings, by the artist Liat Polotsky. To whoever  views them for the first time, and also those whose memories do not betray them, the paintings look familiar; a number of them are based on black and white photos from the well-known book by Azaria Alon, (a founder of the Society for the Preservation of Nature,) An Alef-Bet of Birds, published 40 years ago.

According to Liat, the illustrations of the book took hold in her mind many years ago, when studying at Bezalel, “when I came upon the original book by Azaria Alon in which the original black and white photos appeared, accompanied by text which described the birds native to Israel colorfully and with humor.  I loved the text and the birds, and was sorry that they were in black and white. I decided to draw in color those that I especially loved” she said.

A couple of years ago after the paintings of the birds had waited in a draw for almost 40 years, Liat approached Azaria Alon and suggested to re-release the book, this time with color pictures, that will replace the black and white ones. Alon agreed, and after some hard work, Liat completed painting all the birds from the original book. The new book was published a number of months ago by Kibbutz Hame’uchad.

The exhibition at Bet Ussishkin is intended to complete the permanent collection.