Five Rising Young Creativesby Anna Kopito | 28.06.13
In every city, there is a group of young, creative people making changes happen. They are the decision makers, constantly looking for new projects which develops, revolutionizes and reforms the way we look at things.
Tel Aviv is a city recognized for its creative population. Sarah Peguine, Alexandra Schinasi, Lee Rotenberg, Katharina Hoeftmann and Avital Gourary are similar in many ways. They have either been growing up or spent several years abroad; in Brussels, London, Lausanne, New York, Boston, Berlin and Tokyo. But most importantly of all, they have chosen to return to the city, ready to shake things up and make them look, sound and feel different though art, design, writing and architecture. And they are willing to work hard to succeed.
SARAH PEGUINE, 26, was working at Dvir Gallery, one of the leading art galleries in Tel Aviv, for four years before she decided to focus on her start-up: Oh-So-Arty. The business consists of a blog – a guide about the Israeli Contemporary Art scene with useful information on the best shows and exhibitions in Israel, and the Israeli artists showing abroad. Sarah Peguine is eager to support emerging Israeli artist, and brings different collectors to gallery tours. She focuses on people from her own generation, who also wish to get more familiar with the art scene in Israel, meet artists, go to galleries and bring art into their homes. Even though Sarah is an expert on the online sphere, where she’s developing her blog and other social media channels, she is also offering private exclusive art tours.
ALEXANDRA SCHINASI and LEE ROTENBERG, 28 and 27, are the co-founders of ArtSetters, launching this summer. ArtSetters is a curated shopping utility that connects brands to buyers, specializing in featuring emerging and established talents from the world’s culture capitals, such as Tel Aviv, Beirut, Istanbul, Athens, Paris, Berlin. One of the central sections of the website will be La Clique Magazine, which will gather the bloggers in art, design and fashion from each of the cities featured on the site. Living in Tel Aviv, and discovering its artistic scene, triggered them to create a key into these creative circles.
KATHARINA HOEFTMANN, 29, is currently working on her fourth book, a non-fiction, about growing up and realizing that life became more complicated and serious than you expected. Katharina just finished her third book, which was the second one in a series of crime novels set in Tel Aviv. The first crime novel was nominated for one of the most important price for German crime literature. Her first book “Guten Morgen, Tel Aviv” came out in 2011 and was a collection of columns (published in the German newspaper “Die Welt”) that dealt with “Olah Hadasha”and living in Israel as a German. Right now she is in the signing process of her next crime novel that will also be set in Tel Aviv, and takes a closer look into the Israeli Army. The previous books dealt with themes such as African refugees in Israel, Arabic Israelis and Ultra-Ortodox Jews. She also started to build a tiny publishing business with the Giftbook “Mazal Tov and Good Luck”.
AVITAL GOURARY, 28, is an architect working at her own architecture studio AN+ together with her partner Natanel Elfassy; she calls them “a collaborative design practice embracing architecture, art and philosophy”. Their first project in Tel Aviv was a collective housing in Neve Tzedek – mentioned in Wallpaper and in Haaretz – among other projects such as a exhibition space at Rothschild 69 for the artist Guy Yanai, and a brasserie in collaboration with R2M in Ramat Aviv Mall – only to mention a few. She currently works on several projects at the studio, such as a new apartment hotel on Rothschild 69, a hotel and a restaurant on Rothschild 48, an apartment complex near Shuk HaCarmel, a winery and guest house in the desert, and a vacation house in Mei Ami. She is also teaching architecture at Bezalel Academy of Arts in Jerusalem.