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Dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Naomi Frankel

May 4 - 20 | The Anna Akhamatova Museum at the Fountain House (St. Petersburg)

The project by Galina Zernina

and Mikhail Epshtein

What is a human? How does this human become exactly like he is? What influence cannot be just wiped out of the life?

We are sure – dominant influence, basics of world outlook are subject to form within our family, at that place and that culture, to which we originally belong. Words spoken by close, dear persons, books read in childhood, great spaces seen in this time…

There are a lot of things which can change during the period of growing-up, formative years and during the rest of the life. But the basis, the core, appeared once long ago, will remain till the end.

Naomi Frankel, who was grown up in Germany and from her childhood had an excellent education, was aimed to go to Palestine. She was the only one in the whole family preparing very seriously for such a step with all responsibility, possible for a child. And she will really become the person who took direct participation in construction of the country Israel, investing heavily in creation of world of Jewish state. However, Naomi always had somewhere inside a small part of Germany of her childhood and it culture – small part of European culture (of Jewish-European world).

So different worlds, cultures and spaces in a wonderful manner were united and became woven together in one person.

In a person, existing simultaneously in two cultures, these different worlds are often so tightly interleaved, that sometimes one can mention them being shown through one another, but  sometimes turning into something else. You look intently, seeing one or another culture and in a moment it is something very new, something yet unknown. So wonderful cultural and human patterns.


Images, presented by this exhibition are not direct documentary of Naomi Frankel’s life.

They were inspired by her life and works and represents an attempt to intertwine worlds of Israel and Berlin, receiving –when happens – a new third world, absolutely unknown and unexplored.


The same is with Naomi herself.

While we were preparing the exhibition we had faced an amazing situation. On the one hand, Naomi is a well-known Israel writer, winner of several awards and on the other – little known by present day reading public. Apparently, twists and turns of Naomi’s life are known and partly reflected in her books, but on the other hand, at closer look, there are still remain a lot of unknown, missed points and not discovered issues…

Thus we need to look more closely at the web of fates and events, seeking for exactly that Naomi…But because everything is tightly woven together and all of us have our own way of looking, image of Naomi we have will different each time and each of us will find her a bit different.

And this is exactly what this exhibition is about.

Artist was focused on attempt to explore these amazing interlace of Naomi’s life – Germany and Israel – and represent own views on the plastic of these two intersecting spaces, own version of life secret texts visual decoding.

Keys to the ciphers mainly can be found in Naomi Frankel’s books.

That is why, essential part of the exhibition is represented in extracts from her texts, letters, memoirs, facts from her biography.

We hope that this process of searching will be interesting and important for exhibition guests.

As well we expect that this photography exhibition will become a good reason to find out more about Naomi Frankel and her texts.

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