"Reuven Israel, while regarding his new work, paused for a moment, then said: “What is important—and what I want my sculptures to create—is a space for fantasy, for imagination.” Too much of today’s art is literal, he continued. Art and life may be proximate, but they are not the same.
Israel is a formalist, but his brand of formalism hovers over specific things in the world without coming to a standstill. Fluidity of meaning is inher- ent to his practice, full of associative riffs and speculations that are serious, strange, humorous, the range of pos- sible readings crucial to its richness, urging viewers to let their responses wander. Labors of lavish, stubborn love, these utopian objects are steeped in contingency and a kind of magical thinking, mischievous talismans for an uneasy era."