The HMA has gone through many reincarnations since its opening in the early 70's at Shabbetai Levi Street on the verge between the Muslim, Christian and Jewish neighborhoods of Haifa. It started as an ethnography museum, then developed into a modern art museum, and since the appointment of Tami Katz Freiman as chief curator, has become dedicated to the presentation of contemporary art.
In that sense, the HMA may have widened its realms of interest to national and international concerns, but in many ways lost its connection to the local community, while losing its voice, and the possible advantages of its strategic location in the city of Haifa. This has raised the concern of the local artistic community, which in many ways is regarded to be a periphery in the Israeli art scene, the centre of which is located in Tel Aviv.
As two Haifa born-and-raised artists and curators, we sought to actively interrogate into the roots and sensibilities of the art community in Haifa, renewing the connection between the museum and its potential audience.
In collaboration with curator Yaelah Hazut we are pursuing research within the Haifa Art Community including interviews, studio visits and collaborations with local practitioners. The aim of this research is to potentially define Haifa's artistic community unique voice, while creating a platform for its presentation through the HMA.
Our project aims to intervene within the community, initiating art events, where an art community could be defined, and artistic and curatorial workshop to raise the local awareness to art activities in the city.