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When I first began to combine live performance and visual art, I was concerned with the limitations presented as a default of working within these two different media. Initially, I used video and then digital image manipulation to try and merge the two together. I used my image in a virtual digital space splitting my body, duplicating and working with the parts and voice as materials for my work.
Later on I started working with music creating my own lyrics and music and performing as a singer.

Popaganda

Towards the end of my MA Fine art studies at Goldsmiths College, 2002, I focused on the relation between the fascist leader and the pop star as dominant performers in front of a desiring audience of supporters/fans. Both creating, through their performance, a focal force that draws people in, in a totalitarian, collective mode. Media, pop culture and fashion in the case of the pop star, and images of power and control behind the fascist leader help to create this mythical figure that is channelling visions of hope and releases the individual from their every day life into a fantastic utopian experience.

I was drawn specifically to the WWII period because at the time of my studies I was commissioned to create work for the 'Wonderyears' exhibition in Berlin, focused on third generation Israeli artists' view on Nazism and the Holocaust.

Being a performance artist, I decided to take on the pop star role by becoming one, by joining friends who play in contemporary electro punk rock acts- Chicks On Speed and Peaches - on a tour of the US (the 'Electroclash' tour, summer 2002).

I recorded a repertoire of songs that I could perform as a singer. I took old songs from the WWII period (by Marlene Dietrich, Bertold Brecht and Kurt Weil), created new melodies and sang them over existing backing instrumental tracks by synth-pop, music concrete and electrronica artists such as Visage, Pierre Henry, and Mu-sic (Mike Paradinas). My brother, the artist Yoav Ben-David, wrote some tracks for me as well.

I got more and more involved in music after my graduation and started performing with 'Popaganda Live', all over Europe supporting Chicks On Speed whom I've been working with, as a visuals person at the time. I performed in a number of festivals, galleries and venues. I also created the 'Hugo Boss provocation' which was a political prank and intervention, where I infiltrated the firm's annual event as a formally booked performer after the firm refused to assist on my 'Wonderyears' project relating to their business collaborations with the Nazis. I addressed this during my performance at the party and caused some furor within the company (details in separate document).

I consider myself not a musician per se, but an artist that uses music and live performance (art) as a main arena of action, mediation and communication. I find performance to be the most relevant, engaging and immediate form of art, as nothing can replace the moment that takes place when a live performer is in action. A moment that can not be bought, packaged or traded, only shared

For more information go to: work and cv or contact ben_david_anat@hotmail.com