There are artists like Niv Rozenberg who take a simple object, like a skyscraper, and change the way we look at it by enhancing its beauty. This Brooklyn based photographer focuses on the relationships with his surroundings, using straight photography and digital manipulations. Niv has received numerous awards for his work including the Parsons, The New School for Design Dean’s Scholarship and an honorable mention by the Adobe Design Achievement Awards. Every moment that Niv captures is helping his audience open up their eyes to their surroundings.
1) What or who inspired you to want to be an artist?
I can’t think of a single thing or person that inspired me to be an artist. However, there were a few moments that left a great impression on me and my work: printing in the darkroom during an introductory photography workshop, getting my first photography book Stranger Passing by Joel Sternfeld, and during college it was Mitch Epstein’s work that influenced and encouraged me to use large format. Most recently it was Rem Koolhaas’ manifesto for New York City in which he describes the skyscraper as an Automonument, an idea that became the title of my most recent series.
2) What was your creative journey that has brought you to where you are in your career today?
I bought my first 35mm camera when I was 20 years-old, and back then I was taking pictures for fun, but when I took an introduction to black & white photography class, I fell in love with photography. I remember spending hours in the darkroom printing my pictures. This made me realize that photography was more than just a hobby for me so, I enrolled in the photography program at Hadassah College in Jerusalem. I moved to New York City three years ago to pursue my M.F.A. at Parsons, The New School for Design and graduated last year.
3) What do you need as an artist today?
The short answer would be time and money. I could use a few more hours a day to do my work, which includes photographing, developing, scanning, and editing. I could also always use some extra money to produce my work…and pay rent.
4) What creative project are you working on now?
I recently had my first solo show in Shalom Meir Tower gallery in Tel-Aviv. My work, Automonuments, focuses on skyscrapers as a phenomenon of modern life. It was especially fitting for me to show this work in that space, the very first Israeli skyscraper. This year I also had the privilege to photograph to Frieze Art Fair campaign for the New York City art fair that took place a couple of weeks ago in Randall’s Island. Now, I am in the first phases of a new project. Like my previous work, it involves explorations of my surroundings.
5) Where do you see yourself and your career in 10 years?
Wow, that’s a tough one. I definitely see photography in my future one way or another. It would be great to keep doing my work, be represented by a gallery and to have opportunities to show my work. I am also interested in participating in residencies and teaching at some point.
6) What does it mean to you to be an Israeli artist?
I was born in Israel and spent most of my life there. Even though my work is not specifically about being an Israeli, I will always be one. Culture, heritage and education are an integral part of who I am and what my work is.
7) What does it mean to you to have an organization like AICF available in the art world?
As they support many Israeli artists, AICF supported me in the past with a scholarship during college. It is not just the money, but also the fact that someone believes in you and in your work at the very early steps of the way. AICF also raises awareness for the Israeli arts and culture by having a great network of artists from many disciplines. I am honored to be a part of this family.