Ori Gersht was born in Tel-Aviv, Israel in 1967 and has lived and worked in London for over twenty years. Throughout Gersht's career, his work has been concerned with the relationships between history, memory and landscape. Gersht adopts a poetic, metaphorical approach to explore the difficulties of visually representing conflict and violent events or histories.
Gersht explores relationships between photography and technology, revisiting fundamental philosophical conundrums concerning optical perception, conceptions of time and the relationship between optical photographic images, the intelligence of computers and objective reality. He approaches this challenge not simply through his choice of imagery, but by using modern technology and artificial intelligence to push the technical limitations of photography, questioning its claim to truth.
Frequently referencing art history, Gersht's imagery is uncannily beautiful; the viewer is visually seduced before being confronted with darker and more complex themes, presenting a compulsive tension between beauty and violence. This has included an exploration of his own family's experiences during the Holocaust, a series of post-conflict landscapes in Bosnia and a celebrated trilogy of slow-motion films in which traditional still life images explode on screen. Gersht is perhaps best known for his work with slow-motion capture, wherein he produces images and video portraying fruits, flowers, and other material fracturing when struck with high velocity gunfire.
The corpus of artworks by Ori Gersht is, as described by the Italian curator curator Ermanno Tedeschi, "imbued by that sensation of movement stopped inside the time frame. A painstaking arrangement of the elements being suddenly hit by an explosion. In this apparent violence, the artist immortalises a serenity that goes beyond nature. He succeeds in bringing still life to life, capturing it in the infinitesimal moment in which it explodes and then rests on the ground, destroyed".
Gersht's work has been exhibited and collected by major international institutions including the Museum of Fine Art Boston, Boston; the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington; The Photographers Gallery, London; The National Gallery, London; the J Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, and the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.