Cohen Gan, Pinchas

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COHEN GAN, PINCHAS (1942– ), Israeli artist. Cohen Gan was born in Meknes, Morocco, and immigrated to Israel in 1949. In 1970 he graduated from the Bezalel Art School. He studied at the Central School of Art at London in 1971 and then joined Bezalel as a teacher. In 1973 he received his M.A. degree in sociology and history of art from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and in 1977 an M.A. in art from Columbia University. From 1990 he was an associate professor in Bezalel. In 1968 he was severely injured by a terrorist car bomb.

Cohen Gan is considered an avant-garde artist and was a major voice in bringing back the figure and subject matter to a modern art under the influence of Pop Art and minimalism. His art reflects deep political and social concerns. It directly confronts man's condition while challenging and commenting on his fellow artists. His work is influenced by his childhood memories as an immigrant. He exhibited in many museums and art galleries the world over, among them the Israel Museum, Tel Aviv Museum, galleries in New York, and the Los Angeles Museum. He represented Israel at the Documenta in Kassel, Germany, the Sao Paulo Biennale, and the Biennale of Venice. In 1991 he published And These Are the Names with 100 drawings representing 100 lost Jewish communities destroyed by the Nazis in Europe and North Africa. He also participated in a traveling exhibition to Israel's provincial settlements aimed at attracting their population to art. He won an America-Israel Cultural Foundation grant in 1978, the Isaac Stern Creativity Prize, Sandberg Prize of the Israel Museum (1979), Minister of Education Prize (1991), Eugene Kolb Prize for Israeli Graphics (1991), and Acquisition Prize of Tel Aviv Museum (1991).

[Shaked Gilboa (2nd ed.)]