Israeli military service runs for 21 months and is compulsory for men as well as women. Israeli choreographer Reut Shemesh enters deep into the emotional, physical, and sexual abyss of her own service time for LEVIAH, unearthing secrets and suppression. Not only is the daily drill a challenge to both body and mind; the soldiers fight for the recognition of their male superiors and the resistance against intrusive behaviour prove challenging, too. Reut Shemesh and performer Hella Immler summarise this experience of being at the mercy of someone else and loss of control in strong and harrowing images.
The intensive collaboration between Reut Shemesh and tanzhaus nrw began with a performance of LEVIAH, and it culminated in an invitation to become Factory Artist in 2020. In her works, the artist deals with the crosslinks between visible feminine self-portrayal and imagined ascriptions of the self from the inside and the outside. Following her education at Arnhem’s ArtEZ and postgraduate studies at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne (KHM), she now lives and works as a choreographer and performer in Cologne.
Part of Factory Finale
Hella Immler, Reut Shemesh
Light, video, photography
Dario Mendez Acosta
Sabina Stücker, Sandra Jasper
A production by Reut Shemesh, co-produced by TanzFaktur Köln. Funded by Kulturamt der Stadt Köln, Kunststiftung NRW, Ministerium für Kinder, Familie, Flüchtlinge und Integration des Landes NRW and Kunsthochschule für Medien Köln.