I have been following Yoel Tordjman‘s artistic practice for about two years now.
As one who is interested in his artistic development, I cannot but perceive the passionate and laborious manner with which he deals with his images.
Yoel has a number of sources of inspiration taken from his surroundings. most of them, but not all of them are unrecognizable in his work, the only hint to their origin being in the titles.
Yoel works at them by digital means up to the point of abstraction.
There is a great feeling of imagination, of freedom, of intelligence each subject has a path in which it travels, layers upon layers of work, before they end up as one sole image, the longer the path, the more elaborate and complex the image.. Yoel Tordjman‘s technique and artistic virtuosity are unique, he has a profound understanding of his medium. he knows where he wants to lead his image to, therefore the result achieved is absolutely convincing.
One can talk of his works at different levels, the physical one and the spiritual one good art integrates these levels into one super image and Yoel has hundreds of those, if not more.
His work is recognized and accepted worldwide, it is universal, combining aesthetic technique and psychology, it hints at history of art, at philosophical thought. In addition to that, religion and spirituality .
When looking at Yoel Tordjman‘s work, one feels that there is something there that cannot be explained solely by technical terms, such as composition, rhythm, choice of colors etc.
Many have tried to explain their feelings when looking at his work, remaining at a loss for words. how does one know one is looking at something which gives a feeling of satisfaction unfathomed? attempt at deciphering this riddle, must take into account Yoel‘s specific and singular situation.
When speculating on Yoel Tordjman‘s art, one cannot separate his work from his persona. He is a unique combination of artist cum practicing religious Jew. There are few artists who combine such spheres, there is no doubt in my mind what a clear proof this is of his non-conventionality, a major trait for becoming an authentic original artist. This fact cannot be ignored or dismissed, it projects upon his work, gives it an aura of spirituality, a metaphysical expression, raising his work to a higher level, explaining its universal reception and recognition.
Yoel Tordjman the artist, is a special case in which a human being manages to combine the sphere of religion, artistic and aesthetic sensibility, super knowledge of digital technology, and determination that comes from belief in his work .
I will not attempt at describing his work in a concrete manner, because it would be impossible to convey the essence by describing a specific work. His images are so variable, his composition, differ so, one from the other, his subjects are so varied. There isn‘t a colors scheme .that characterizes him, and yet, his work is so obviously identified with him.
some if his images are radically minimalistic, some are composed of extremely small patches of colours intricately woven into a composition. When looking at his work there is instant recognition that this is a work done by Yoel Tordjman, as a spectator I keep asking myself what quality is it in his work that makes it stand apart? the most prominent feature is the light that radiates from all his works. Yoel doesn‘t just deal with shade and light as a subject matter, in the classical manner. light is his medium, he works with, it is his brush, his palette.
The fact that Yoel Tordjman‘s art is digitally based, categorizes him as a contemporary artist, an artist that expresses the spirit of his times, today the media, rather than the subject matter defines the artists place in the contemporary history of art.
in spite of this, Tordjman‘s art is based on all the values of the finest of classical art ,taking into account all the abstract qualities that make up the language of plastic art.
The Artist as Disruptor
By Adam Leipzig
What do we know about Yoel Tordjman?
1. He is an artist.
2. He is wildly prolific.
3. His art resists category.
4. He is a disruptive event.
That he is an artist is glaringly self-evident. Who but an artist would consistently create visual imagery and share it so widely?
Tordjman is also prolific. This is a recent development. His work burst into public view in 2011, as water bursts through a dam. Once broken, the dam cannot be restored. Similarly, Tordjman’s work gushes forth, and he often releases multiples images in a day. It seems as though by living in the midst of printmaking, art direction, and industrial design, which was his former life, he developed a deep creative impetus which lay unexpressed until he was 51 years old. Then he exploded with a series of galleries that now amount to hundreds of individual works.
His works resists category, or rather they appear in a variety of categories, which he collects in his many galleries, and they are widely different. All of them fall under the classification of “digital art,” although that says little about them, just as “watercolor” says nothing about the content of thousands of other artists’ works.
This is not to say there’s no common thread. There is. Tordjman possesses the ability to see things with eyes that are both spiritual and mystical. This thread pulls viewers in two directions. Each artwork seems to reveal something sacred, that hasn’t been revealed before: that’s one end of the thread, the spiritual end. Yet what precisely is revealed remains hidden; it’s a secret viewers must somehow engage and untangle for themselves: that’s the other end of the thread, its mystical aspect.
And Tordjman is a disruptor. Artists and entrepreneurs are cut from the same cloth, because they both envision a different reality and seek to bring it forth and share it with the world. In the arena of entrepreneurs, disruptive innovations are the innovations that matter, because they up-end traditional businesses and economies. Tordjman disrupts because of the way he approaches his audience and shares his work – he does it through the virtual world.
We might think of him as the world’s first Global Web Artist. Tordjman rejects the notion that an artist needs to go through the traditional “gatekeepers” – galleries and collectors – to become publically visible. Instead, he has built a massive following in less than a year though online social networks.
Of course, Tordjman is a disruptor in the classical artist sense too, and that’s why his work has resonance with so many people. He disrupts us out of our daily lives and expectations. We look at his work. We see a book, a wave, a series of composed abstract colors. We know them, but we don’t. They are familiar to us, but they aren’t. When we encounter them, we’re shaken out of what we expect to find. That’s what real disruption, and real art, is all about.
Adam Leipzig (
) is a cultural activist who trains artists and entrepreneurs to get transformative results; he is also the publisher of Cultural Weekly ().