Dr. Ayelet Zohar

History of Art Department
חוג לתולדות האמנות סגל אקדמי בכיר


Dr. Ayelet Zohar is a Senior Lecturer at the History of Art Department, Tel Aviv University. She received her PhD from the Slade School of Fine Art, Universty College London (UCL), University of London (2007), followed by a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Stanford Univesrity (2007-2009), and a second Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC (2011). In 2012 Dr. Zohar was a Research Fellow at Hokkaidô University, followed by two research periods at Waseda University in Tokyo (2017 and 2018). Dr. Zohar holds a research grant from the Israeli Science Foundation (ISF) for her research on war memory in contemporary Japanese photography and video art (2016-2019). Dr. Zohar was a Visiting Associate Professor at the History of Art Dept., Yale University (2018). Dr. Zohar is the recep[ient of the Ishibashi Foundation for Japanese Art History Research, 2019-2020.

Dr, Zohar's main fields of research are the history and theory of Japanese phorography; Contemporary fine art photography; Historical, Meiji era photography; Art and visual culture in Japan; Postcolonial theory; Deleuzian studies; Psychoanalysis and Trauma Studies.

Dr. Zohar has published extensively on issues of Japanese photography and contemporary art, war memory in Japanese photography, gender and sexuaity in contemporary Japanese art/ photography. Dr. Zohar alsoresearched questions of camouflage and photograpraphy, and has related to issues of Foucauldian, Deleuzian and Rancierian theories in this respect. 

Dr. Zohar is a transdisciplinary artist and an independent curator. In 2005 she curated "PostGender: Gender, Sexuality and Performativity in Contemporary Japanese Art" exhibition (Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art, Haifa, 2005), "Two moon on the Shore and a Clockwork Bird in Norweigian Wood: Haruki Murakami and Contemporary Art," (Contemporary Art Gallery, Tel Aviv, 2014); and  "Beyond Hiroshima: The Return of the Repressed"  (Tel Aviv Universirty Art Gallery, Tel Aviv, 2015).

Ayelet Zohar, Curriculum Vitae


1982-1986   Midrasha Art School, Major: Painting; Video art; Installation 

1986-1991   BA, East-Asian Studies (Japan), Hebrew University, Jerusaslem (Cum Laude)  

1993-1995   MFA, Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing   Ink Painting Dept. Lansdscape Studio (MFA)

1995-1996   The New Seminar for Curatoial and Critical Studies, Camera Obscura, Tel Aviv

1996-2000   MA, Comparative Literature, Tel Aviv University (Summa Cum Laude)

2002-2007   PhD, Slade School of Fine Art, Uniersity of London

2007-2009   Postdoctoral Fellowship, Stanfod University, CA

2011             Postdoctoal Fellowship, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC


Academic appointments

2010-2013   Teaching Fellow, University of Haifa and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem

2012-2014   Teaching Fellow, East-Asian Studies & Art History Depts., Tel Aviv University

2015-2017   Lecturer, Art History Dept. Tel Aviv University

2017-           Senior Lecturer, Art History Dept. Tel Aviv University

2018-           Visiting Associate Professor, Yale University

Research Interests

Critical Theory; Theories of Photography; History of Photography; Japanese Photography, early starts, Modernist, Contemporary; Contemporary Art in Japan.



Original Articles (in peer reviewed journals)

Dec. 2009   “Bin Laden, The Belly Dancer and the Ethnographic Collection of Israel Museum: Images of Muslims, Arabs and Palestinians in Contemporary Japanese Art," Ma'arav Magazine: for Art and Culture (in Hebrew), electronic magazine  http://maarav.org.il/2009/12/13/zohar_japan/

Jan. 2011  “The Paintings of Ibrahim Nubani : Assimilation, Camouflage and Schizophrenia", Theory, Culture & Society, vol. 28(1):3-33. http://tcs.sagepub.com/content/28/1/3.full.pdf+html  (Journal ranking Q1)

Oct. 2011  “The Elu[va]sive Japanese Portrait: Repetition, Difference and Multiplicity", Trans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 2 issue 1  http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=tap;view=text;rgn=main;idno=7977573.0002.103

Oct. 2011  “The Elu[va]sive Portrait: Mimicry, Masquerade and Camouflage Conceptual and Theoretical Notes, an Introduction', Trans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 2 issue 1 http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=tap;view=text;rgn=main;idno=7977573.0002.102

Oct. 2012  “Camouflage, Photography and [In]visibility: Yamashiro Chikako's ‘Chorus of  Melodies’ series (2010),”  Trans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 3 issue 1

Jan. 2013  “On Butō and Body, Gender, Performance and Mimicry: Morimura Yasumasa, Ōno Kazuo and the Movement Discourse,” Dance Now** 23 (special issue: On Butō Dance) (in Hebrew), 76-81.

Jan. 2014  “Yayoi Kusama: The Jewel, the Mirror and the String of Beads,” N. Paradoxa vol. 33 (special issue: Religion). (Journal ranking Q2)

May 2016  “Bir'im on Caves: Archive of Archives, Photo Essay” and “Epilogue,” Bezalel Journal of Visual and Material Culture, Issue 3 Visual Activism http://journal.bezalel.ac.il/he/article/3688 (in Hebrew)

May 2017 “Performativity and Invisibility: The Asia-Pacific War Memory in Japanese Photography—Tsukada Mamoru’s Identical Twins Series (2003) and Suzuki Norio’s Photos of Onoda Hiroo (1974),” positions: asia critique, Vol. 25(2):388-429. (Journal ranking Q1 in all sections/ scales) http://muse.jhu.edu.rproxy.tau.ac.il/article/654624

Nov 2017  “Camouflage” Mafteach: Political Thought Lexicon (Minerva Institute for th Humanities, Tel Aviv University)(in Hebrew).  


Refereed Articles in Books

Jan   2010   “Pelluses/ Phani: The Multiplication, Displacement and Appropriation of the Phallus", in Keith Vincent & Nina Cornyetz, eds., Perversion and Modern Japan: Experiments in Psychoanalysis (London: Routledge, 2010):102-123.

May 2014   “Strategies of Camouflage: Schizoanalysis in Contemporary Photography" in: Ian Buchanan and Lorna Collins, eds., Deleuze and the Schizoanalysis of Visual Art (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2014):173-202.

June 2016    “6 August" (Matsushige Yoshito photographs of the A Bomb in Hiroshima), in: End of Empire: One Hundred Days in 1945 that Changed Asia and the World, Copenhagen, Denmark: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, 2016):35-41.

June 2016    “9 August" (Yamahata Yosuke photographs of the A Bomb in Nagasaki), in: David Chandler, Robert Cribb, and Li Narangoa (eds). End of Empire: One Hundred Days in 1945 that Changed Asia and the World, Copenhagen, Denmark: Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, 2016):44-47.

July 2016 「マハトマ・ガンディー,毛沢東、べトコン兵士グェン・ヴァン・レムを処刑するヴァン・ゴク・ロアン 森村泰昌におけるアジアのイメージ」『日本およびアジア地域におけるグローバル・アートとディアスポラ・アート』[Global art and Diasporic Art in Japan and Asia], MAM Research 002 (Tokyo: University of Tokyo & Mori Art Museum, 2016):222-242. (in Japanese).

Nov 2016  “Performative Recollection: Koizumi Meiro Representations of kamikaze pilots and the Trauma of Asia-Pacific War in Japan,” in: Yochai Ataria, David Gurevich, Yuval Neria and Haviva Pedia (eds.) Interdisciplinary Handbook of Trauma and Culture (London: Springer Publishing, 2016):117-131.


2019, "Tathāgata, Trace and Indexicality: Foot and Hand Prints in Japan," in: Julia Hegeweld (ed.) In the Footsteps of the Masters: Footprints, Feet and Shoes as Objects of Veneration in the Arts of Asia, Berlin: EB Verlag.


Chapters in Books

May 2009   “Anti-Oedipus, Ajase Complex and PostGender: The Multiplicity and Temporality of Genders', in:  Ayelet Zohar, ed., PostGender: Gender, Sexuality and Performativity in Japanese Culture, (Newcastle-upon-tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2009):xxvii-lvi.

May 2009  “The Multiplicity of the Phallus: Becoming and Repetition", in Ayelet Zohar, ed., PostGender: Gender, Sexuality and Performativity in Japanese Culture (Newcastle-upon-tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2009):109-154.

Sep 2009  “The Pregnant Man: Fiction or Future Reality?,” in Ayelet Zohar, ed.,  PostGender: Gender, Sexuality an/d Performativity in Japanese Culture (Newcastle-upon-tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Press, 2009):171-181.

May 2016    “Mergence and Emergence: A Biological Model for Reading the Israeli Architectural and Political Space" in:  Yael Eylat Van Essen (ed.) LifeObject: Merging Biology & Architecture   The Israeli Pavilion at the 15th Annual Venice Biennale for Architecture (Montreal, Quebec: Sternthal Books, Inc., 2016):47-56.

Nov 2016  “Broken Vessel: Deconstruction, Shattering, and Chimerian Narratives in Contemporary [Ceramic] Art,” in: Shlomit Bauman (ed.) Matter as Language/ Language as Matter (Tel Aviv: Benyamini Contemporary Ceramics, 2016):20-45. (in Hebrew).


Books and Journals Edited

July 2009   Editor, PostGender: Gender, Sexuality and Performativity in Japanese  Culture, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, UK, 341p. ISBN 1-4438-0990-X

Oct 2011  Guest editor, The Eva[lu]sive Portrait: Photographic Portraiture in East-Asia and BeyondTrans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 2, issue 1 http://quod.lib.umich.edu/t/tap/7977573.0002.1*?rgn=main;view=fulltext

Jun  2015   Editor, Beyond Hiroshima: The Return of the Repressed   Wartime Memory, the Performative and the Documentary in Contemporary  Japanese Photography and Video-Art, Tel Aviv University Art Gallery 288p. ISBN 978-965-7160-41-1


April 2019  Zmanim: Historical Quarterly, Tel Aviv University. Special issue dedicated to Martin Scorsese's Silence.

Dec. 2019   Review of Japanese Culture and Society, Jōsai University, Tokyo. Special issue: “Post-Photography, Critical Images: Photography beyond Representation and Affective Images at Times of Crisis and New Contingencies in the Heisei Era” (Working Title). Chief editor: Miya Mizuta-Lippit


Texts in Exhibition Catalogues

Sep. 2005  “The Seven Genders of Japan,” PostGender: Gender, Sexuality and Performativity in Contemporary Japanese Art, Exhibition catalogue, Haifa Museum Publication, 232pp. full colour, ISBN 965-7067-61-8

Nov. 2012   Catalogue text for Smashing!: Fragments in Contemporary [Ceramic] Art and Beyond, Exhibition catalogue, Beit Benyamini, Tel Aviv.

Dec. 2012   “Smashing! Deconstruction, Fragility and Fragments in Contemporary [Ceramic] Arts,” article on Erev Rav Magazine for Art and Culture (in Hebrew)  http://erev-rav.com/archives/21590

May  2013   “Folds and Tents, Portraits and Drawers: Homage to Lutfiya, My Sister at the Yarmouk Camp,” in: Homage to Loutfiya, Abed Abdi's painting and two dimensional work, Exhibition catalogue (Haifa: Beit Hagefen Gallery). 96 pp. full colour. In Hebrew, Arabic, and English.

May 2014   Exhibition text for Two Moons on the Shore, Wind-Up Bird in Norwegian Wood: Haruki Murakami and Contemporary Art (Tel Aviv: Contemporary by Golconda Gallery). 45 pp. Full colour. In Hebrew and English. http://contemporary.co.il/show_exhibition/48. In Hebrew and English.

March 2015  “Ceci n'est pas un Chofar,” text for Avital Geva exhibition Jews, Contemporary by Golconda Art Gallery, Tel Aviv http://contemporary.co.il/show_exhibition/54. In Hebrew and English.

May 2015 “Introduction” in: Beyond Hiroshima: The Return of the Repressed Wartime Memory, Performativity and the Documentary in Contemporary Japanese Photography and Video Art, Exhibition catalogue (Tel Aviv: Tel Aviv University Art Gallery):10-23. In English, Hebrew and Japanese.

Sep 2015  “Meiro Koizumi, The Kamikaze Projects: Towards a Definition of the Third Generation in Japan,” in: Meiro Koizumi: Portrait of a Failed Silence (Mexico City: MUAC・Museo Universitario Arte Contemporáneo, UNAM):36-49. In English and Spanish.



Review Articles

Book reviews

April 2013     Review of Maki Fukuoka's “The Premise of Fidelity: Science, Visuality, and Representing the Real in Nineteenth-Century Japan,” Trans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 3, issue 2

May 2013    Review of Paul O'Neill's 'The Culture of Curating and the Curating of Culture(s)", Journal of Curatorial Studies, vol. 2. issue 2, Summer 2013 (Journal ranking O1)

Feb. 2018    Review of Midori Yamamura’s “Yayoi Kusama: Inventing the Singular,” Japanese Language and Literature. Reviews editor: Janice Carole Brown.


2018    Review of Atsuko Sakaki’s “The Rhetoric of Photography in Modern Japanese Literature,” Japanese Language and Literature. Reviews editor: Janice Carole Brown

Exhibition reviews

Jul-Aug. 1998  “Chen Zhen: The Edge of Poetics- 50 strokes to Each", Studio 95, 62-64 (in Hebrew).

Apr. 2012  “Okinawa-Philadelphia-Tokyo: The Specificity and Complexity of Mao Ishikawa’s Photographic Work', Trans Asia Photography Review,* Vol. 2 issue 2 http://quod.lib.umich.edu/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=tap;view=text;rgn=main;idno=7977573.0002.204

July 2012   “Adding to Subtract,” exhibition review, Erev Rav Magazine for Art and Culture, (in Hebrew), http://erev-rav.com/archives/19272. (in Hebrew).

Nov. 2012   “Meta Narrative" Reconsidering Exhibitions of Asian Art in Israel, Erev Rav Magazine for Art and Culture (in Hebrew), http://erev-rav.com/archives/21118. (in Hebrew).

Nov. 2015    Review of “Great Crescent: Art and Agitation in the 1960s – Japan, South Korea and Taiwan,” exhibition at Mori Art Museum, Tokyo April-July, 2015 in: Avi Lubin and Lea Abir (eds.)  Tohu Magazine   http://tohumagazine.com/article/great-crescent-art-and-agitation-1960s-%E2%80%93-japan-south-korea-and-taiwan (in Hebrew, English and Arabic).

June 2017  "Recycling, but still actual. Ai in Jerusalem" Review of Ai Weiwei's "Maybe, Maybe Not." In: Erev Rav: Art, Culture and Soceity http://www.erev-rav.com/archives/46241 (in Hebrew).


Reviews of My Books

March 2017   Miriam Wattles "Beyond Hiroshima: The Return of the Repressed; Wartime Memory, Performativity and the Documentary in Contemporary Japanese Photography and Video Art ed. by Ayelet Zohar (review)," Journal of Japanese Studies vol. 43(1)(Winter 2017):197-201. (Journal ranking Q2).

May 2017     Yoshiaki Kai "Beyond Hiroshima: The Return of the Repressed; Wartime Memory, Performativity and the Documentary in Contemporary Japanese Photography and Video Art ed. by Ayelet Zohar (review)," History of Photography vol. 41, No. 1 (spring 2017):90-92. (Journal ranking Q1).



Mar  2011   “Ayelet Zohar and Ibrahim Nubani: Interview and Images,” Theory, Culture and Soceity blog, http://theoryculturesociety.blogspot.com/2011/03/ayelet-zohar-and-ibrahim-nubani.html

Jan 2014   “Interview with Prof. Norman Bryson, ” Erev Rav Magazine for Art and Culture http://erev-rav.com/archives/27724. (In Hebrew). לא מנומס לדון בשאלת המעורבות האישית של החוקר עם הדימוי": ראיון עם נורמן ברייסון

Sep 2016  “In conversation with Efrat Livni, ” User Transparent, Ayelet Zohar Solo show at the Haaretz Art Collection, Gallery Minus One, Tel Aviv. Hebrew and English.


Nov. 2017  "Interview with Hsieh Tehching," Erev Rav Magazine for Art and Culture.




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