Bezalel Academy of Art and Design
The name Bezalel Academy of Art and Design (BEZ) is synonymous with more than 100 years of Israeli art, innovation and academic excellence. It is Israel’s oldest institute of higher education and leading design academy, with more than 2000 undergraduate and postgraduate students studying a range of subjects from fine art and photography to industrial design and architecture. Bezalel's faculty of 250 teachers takes pride in the generations of graduates working at the cutting edge of their field both in Israel and abroad.
Bezalel assigns the highest degree of importance to student involvement in the community and to enhancing their social awareness and advocates active student interaction with the society in which they operate. In recent years, efforts have been made to encourage the enrollment of students from marginalized and immigrant communities and this has been significantly enhanced and intensified through diversified courses and projects that address the extensive range of population segments.
The Department of Visual and Material Culture offers students an engaging intellectual environment for the study this subject from the varied perspectives of historiography, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, economics and gender studies. The multitude of methodological and theoretical approaches that are being taught in the department, in conjunction with the development of each student's creative skills as part of her/his professional studies, offers a unique platform for the development of an independent self-reflective critical perspective.
The department's curriculum reflects pluralism and offers students a wide understanding of visual products within contemporary socio-cultural and political contexts. This is achieved by exposing the students to the languages, interpretative tools, intellectual, critical and disciplinary discourses, and analytical frameworks that define contemporary Visual Culture Studies. In parallel, the department seeks to form a strong and dynamic relation between each student's artistic and professional practices.
Mr. Eytan Shouker
Eytan Shouker is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Photography. He is an interdisciplinary artist who creates big-scale projects related to culture, politics, social issues and community. Mr. Shouker leads groups of students to initiate art-based projects in partnerships with communities, organizations and institutions (i.e. Sala-Manca Group). In the past, he served as a chairperson of the Professional Union of Visual Artists and is presently the Head of the Research Department of this union.
Ms. Ruti Kantor
Ruti Kantor is a Senior lecturer at the Department of Visual Communication.
She is a political and social activist and a graphic designer. The courses she teaches combine social involvement and active social media activity and her students produce visual communications packages for organizations and NGO's. Ms. Kantor is the Bezalel President's adviser for Gender Fairness in Bezalel. In her studio, she is working on a regular basis for social and environmental organizations.
Dr. Yoav Friedman
Yoav Friedman is the Head of Bezalel Academy of Art and Design's Research & Innovation Authority. He is the Israeli representative at the EU's HERE Forum and leads an international Jean-Monnet research network on Cultural Diplomacy. His doctoral research dealt with EU's higher education policies, namely the Bologna Process and internationalization policies. Yoav was a founding member of Bologna Training Center – an international training center aiming at the enhancement of the harmonization between European and non-European higher education systems. Among his tasks, he coordinated an EU funded project under the Tempus framework, provided workshops, organized international conferences, steered an international network under the Jean-Monnet framework and served at the European Network for Quality Assurance in higher education as a member of the international experts' pool.
Ms. Elham Rokni
Elham Rokni is a lecturer at the Art Department. In her drawings and video installations, she repeatedly constructs and deconstructs patterns, colors, and shapes that have to do with her childhood memories and family album from Iran. Her work explores an intricate, multifaceted reality, challenging the boundaries of the existing orders, physical as well as political. Elham has participated in solo and group exhibitions and film festivals in Israel and abroad and received numerous grants and prizes. Her works can be found in various public and private collections such as the permanent collection at LACMA, Los Angeles, Kadist collection, Paris, Daimler Art collection, Berlin, Tel Aviv Museum of Art and the Israeli parliament collection.
Ms. Shelly Hershko
Shelly Hershko is the Dean of Student Affairs at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design. She holds a Master's degree in Arts and Education from the University of Leeds, as well as a teaching certificate. The office Shelly heads is in charge of Social Involvement and Diversity at Bezalel. It operates over 15 projects, among them projects initiating a dialogue between artists and students from different cultures, new immigrants and refugees.
Ms. Tamar Margaret Levi Arman
Tamar Levi Arman is the Director of the Unit for Multiculturalism, Diversity and Social Engagement in the Dean of Students office at the Bezalel Academy for Arts and Design. She is also the Israeli Hope Officer at Bazalel. Tamar holds a Master's degree in Education from the Hebrew University. Previously, she directed Bezalel's Community Academy Partnership and Student Support Unit.