Edna Dali introduces us to a magic, vibrant, aesthetic world. Her work reflects her artistic development beginning with modeling, sculpturing and producing characters and dolls through to creating small sculptures depicting personal and collective messages.
Edna Dali is part of the prevailing tendency in contemporary art of breaking down barriers between different categories of art, between art and reality and between arts and crafts. Through her characters she makes statements, confronts questions and touches upon personal-excitement from within as well as communal problems.
Her special works of art express an open-eyed approach, a love of truth, a sense of humor as well as a need for precision and accuracy.
The characters are sometimes exaggerated and even grotesque as they search for equilibrium and harmony. Her natural senses and abilities combined with the experience of human encounters she gained as a social worker in the early seventies, led her naturally to prefer human figures as her subject matter. Her style reflects a search for beauty, accuracy and perfection in even the smallest of details.
Most of her characters are shy, introverted and do not gaze directly at the viewer, allowing the viewer to go beyond aesthetic feelings to the deeper psychological ones.
Since 2004, Edna has exhibited a series of accurate “replicas” of characters in the operas performed in the Opera House in Tel Aviv: “The Magic Flute” (May-June 2006), “Hoffman Stories” (January –March 2007) and “Venice in Tel-Aviv” (“La Giaconda”, May 2008). All of these characters bear her singularly original artistic style.
Since 2006, she has been involved in creating two new series: The “Circus” and “Edgar”. She uses white clay fired at high temperature, a material which provides her with more flexibility and accuracy and gives the characters the pale complexion she prefers.
In the new series, Edna paints the eyes, hair and clothes of her characters with acrylic colors, and has developed an amazing capability in the use of this medium. In the “Edgar” Series, for example, the “little man” is given a right to existence, autonomy and presentences, basically representing each of us. In Edna’s words, “Not everything depends on the decisions of the Generals, Politicians and Economists- one has to take into consideration the anonymous individual who exists and influences, no less than the y do”. We get acquainted with Edgar and accompany him during several stages of his life and in different states of mind: the baby, the boy, fishing for love, searching his way, drunken, the humorous posture in “What’s up?” and in heaven, surrounded by masks. The mask plays a central role in her created world.
The “Circus” series is driven by a present reality and is a search for equilibrium, though in a slightly disguised way. In the grotesque and exaggerated figures in her “circus of life” one can find the dancer’s long hands and feet in the “Extraction”, and the fat lady in the “Hula Hoop” whose hoop can hardly circumnavigate her heavy hips. The humorous exaggeration stresses the need to find stability and equilibrium in daily life.
Edna Dali’s work manifests the William Shakespeare quotation from “As You Like It”: “All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players”. She transforms the art of sculpture to showcase periods, situations and philosophical and human truths. She acts as a dreamer, execute or, playwright, and costume designer. Her little figures enable one to enjoy complex beauty. Her aim is to stress the aesthetic side of art and to let people enjoy it. She manifests the wish of artists like Renoir and Matisse in creating an art of balance which has the calming influence of a good armchair. (Written by Dr. Dalia Hakker–Orion).