Michal Rovner, Departure #1 (y), 1998

Images of Michal Rovner, Departure #1 (y)

Michal Rovner, Israeli, b. 1957
Departure #1 (y), 1998
Laminated chromogenic development print mounted on Plexiglas
Unframed: 39 ¾ × 40 ¾ in. (101 × 103.5 cm); framed: 40 × 41 in. (101.6 × 104.1 cm)
Collection Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Gift of the artist and Rhona Hoffman Gallery, 1998.46

Photo: Nathan Keay, © MCA Chicago


To produce this hazy, ominous image, Michal Rovner photographed a news broadcast on her television. With this gesture, the artist responds to the detached experience of watching a war unfold faraway. The setting is ambiguous and the group of figures is blurred—it could be anywhere and the shadowy crowd almost anyone.

An artist who divides her time between New York and Israel, Rovner made a similar series of photographs in 1991, during the first Gulf War. She made this work in 1998, as the United States and United Kingdom launched a subsequent four-day bombing campaign in Iraq, observing a history that seemed to repeat itself.