Daughters of the Sea by Itzik Rennert and Jennifer İpekel
The following texts and their accompanying artworks are excerpted from the illustrated book, "Tell Me Your Story", featuring a prologue by Etgar Keret, published by Paper Street Co. in Istanbul, in collaboration with Gnat Micro Press in Tel Aviv.
Where Daughters of the Sea Are
When I was a small boy living in Haifa, I had a hiding place where I could be with myself and nobody else. We had a cluster of thick bushes under our house that the gardener always ignored, so it was untrimmed and wild. You could squeeze yourself, if you were little enough, through a tiny hole in the lavish canopy, and get inside what looked like a green cave made of leaves. It always smelled wet and mysterious. Through the gaps between the leaves and branches, you could see bright blue glimpses of the sky. On my back, arms behind my head, I would stare at those blue pieces of the sky and wait. After a while, the daughters of the sea, as I called them, would come flying. They were white, transparent creatures, hovering far away up there. Some of them rode horses and carriages from one side of the blue to the other, some just drifted with the wind. They were beautiful and perfect, and silent. They always made me calm. Around the time I turned six years old, they stopped visiting. Soon after, the entrance hole to the cave became too small for my body, so there you go.
As a childhood memory, I want to go back to deep history, where I find my childhood memories in a place where no borders exist. I am a tree; my roots go up to the sky and deep into the soil. When it rains, my roots go deeper into the sky. Painting in the air, we worship the sun with naked eyes. I vibrate and talk through the soil with my fellow brothers and sisters. Our language is universal. All welcome who respect our life. We are the only ones left on our planet that have and can give serotonin.
Itzik Rennert was born in Haifa, between mountains and sea, in a middle class yet strange enough family. Not wanting to be a lawyer or a prime minister, he studied design and illustration at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Jerusalem, and Illustration became his path in life. Rennert has been living in Tel Aviv for the last few decades -- yes, he is not a young man anymore -- and was Head of the Visual Communication Department and the Master's in Design Program at Shenkar College, where he is currently a senior lecturer. He eats too much and he doesn't like the color purple.
Searching through her roots and memories of past lives, Jennifer İpekel's work speaks about animism and collective resistance. Traveling through the body and the core of the soul, her work investigates the endless inner landscapes, the ever-changing seasons and the dimensions of the soul that belong to a place of neutrality. Society without a state, which lies at the zero-point of polar differentiation, represents the inner resonance of being, plant life, micro organisms, creatures, a myth for liberation.