Tag Archives: Israel

Geppetto from South Tel-Aviv

Anton 18-s

A year ago, while filming a movie at the Neve-Tzedek quarter in south Tel-Aviv, I “accidentally” picked through one of the house’s window. I know it’s not a very polite thing to do, but the next thing I did was even ruder: I knocked on the window and asked the interesting looking man inside the room if I could possibly take his picture. The man raised his head from the thing he was doing and luckily agreed. That was my first encounter with Anton Avramov. “What are you doing?” I asked him with growing curiosity, and he pointed his finger toward the hangers hanging over his head and said: “I create figures from metal wire”.

The Artist-s

After that coincidental meeting I couldn’t just leave things for chance and scheduled a meeting with Anton where I was going to document him during his work. When we met again, Anton wanted to sculpture a whole band of musicians. He arranged his working tools on the floor of the workshop’s yard and started working with an amazing pace. While I was filming him working, the little figures started to round on the table: A pianist, a trumpeter, a drummer, a harmonica player and a guitarist. “How did you come up with working with a metal wire?” I’ve asked him, amazed. Anton kept his fingers working and told me his story.

Anton 14-s

Anton grew up in Bulgaria, and as a little child he liked playing at his uncle yard. He was especially drawn to the copper wires his uncle stacked at the back of the shed, but it was out of his reach, and his uncle forbade him from touching the material since it was very expensive. In 2002 Anton immigrated to Israel and lived in Kibbutz Ein-Hashofet. As a youth Anton worked at the Kibbutz factory where they manufactured chokes for light bulbs. Anton was very happy to discover that chokes are made from copper wires. The turning point was when his boss gave him a pliers as a present, and he started to play with the desired material. But the pliers had no cutter in it, so Anton had to work with the wire without cutting it. “I can’t really say, it’s very natural for me” Anton told me, “When I see objects I imagine them as one continuous line”.

Anton 4-s

Anton discovered his art by chance, after looking for it in architecture and acting studies. From the acting he probably got his unique and dramatic appearance and his love for inventing characters. Since he began sculpturing with metal wire he made a large variety of artifacts: little delicate figures, portraits and even gigantic objects made with vice, welder and metal chain cutter.

Anton finished his band of musicians and set them on the table. Suddenly, it seemed as if they were coming to life and started playing music. You are welcome to watch the clip and judge for yourself:

Video: Yaniv Berman

Artist: Anton Avramov

Music: Old Fish Jazz Band


Filming in Midair

My friend and colleague Amnon Houri was assigned by a commercial to film a Cessna skydiver’s plane flying at the height of 3000 feet. Lucky for me he invited me to take part in the flight and to shoot some behind the scenes photos. We took our ride with a Bell Jet Ranger III helicopter, handled with a very steady hand by Dov Peleg.

(Dov stands by the Bell Jet Ranger)

At Habonim beach we grouped with Paradive Skydiver’s Cessna and started climbing to 3000 feet height. On the ground Amnon briefed the Cessna pilot to do three different maneuvers for the film, and once we were way up there in the sky, our nose toward the east and our back to the setting sun, they were done with much talent on behalf of all those involved it the operation. All I had to do is point the camera, take photos and some video footage, and enjoy the magnificent view of our little country shore line.

(Amnon filming the Cessna with his video camera)

Here is 6 min video summarizing the experience from start to end:

Photo Gallery:


The Alpha Diaries

On April 2002 I started my photographic journey with Alpha company. The holiday just began and we all had our plans for the free days to come. But after a shocking terrorist attack on Passover eve, the government issued a special order to recruit the reserve units and send them into the Palestinians towns. The military operation was called “Defensive Shield”. My regiment was sent into Bethlehem, where we fought for three weeks. When I had my first chance to take the camera with me I started filming our actions, and I kept doing it for 5 years.

In 2007 I took all the stock of footage and made it into a documentary called “The Alpha Diaries”. This documentary was shown on television channels all over the world, and participated in many film festivals. Now I made a new HD copy of the movie and placed it on YouTube for everybody to watch and to experience how it is to leave everything and become a soldier for one month, every year.

Credits:

Producer: Avi Kleinberger

Director: Yaniv Berman

Editor: Ronit Porat, Gabi Shihor

On-Line: Serg Bezrukoff

Music: Gad Emile Zeitune

Camera: Yaniv Berman

Stills and more video footage: Omri Takoa

Sound Design: Michael Goorevich

 


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