Emet Prize Laureates

Ms. Michal Rovner

2018 Laureates of Emet Prize

In Category: Culture and Art
In Field: Photography

Michal Rovner

Jury Statement

“The Emet Prize is awarded to Michal Rovner for her outstanding pioneering achievements in the field of photography in the broad sense of the medium, for her artistic language which challenges the boundaries of the medium in still photography, video and multi-media installations; and for her work that explores political, historical and existential issues, that are at once local-mythical and universal.”


Michal Rovner was born in Israel in 1957. She studied at Tel Aviv University and subsequently at the Bezalel Academy where she received her B.FA. in Photography  and Art in 1981 and 1985 respectively. In1987 she co-founded, with Arie Hammer, the Camera Obscura School of Art in Tel Aviv.  She has been a member of the Board of Governors of the Hebrew University since 2012 .

Her work in photography, video, sculpture, drawing and installation has established a unique language in art. Stripping down images of most details, and mixing different footage from different places, her works raise issues of identity, place and the human condition. Over the years she has had over 70 solo exhibitions at the world’s most prestigious venues, including a mid-career retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, the Israeli Pavilion at the 50th Venice Biennial (2003), and the Musée du Louvre in Paris. Her works are exhibited in collections of the world's leading museums, including the British Museum in London, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art and the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Tel Aviv Museum of Art and the Israel Museum.

In her series Makom (Place), she collected stones from dismantled Israeli and Palestinian houses, working with both Israeli and Palestinian masons to build new structures that echo conflicts, places and histories. Her permanent public artworks include Living Landscape (2005) at the entrance to the Yad Vashem Museum, video art that pays tribute to Jewish life in  Europe before the Holocaust. At the permanent exhibition in Auschwitz-Birkenau, she created Traces of Life (2013), a room dedicated to the 1.5 million Jewish children murdered in the Shoah. At the Municipio metro station in Naples, she created a fresco-video entitled Passages (2015), and she was commissioned to create a large scale installation at the new Canary Wharf Crossrail station in London to open in late 2018.

She was awarded honorary doctorates from the Hebrew University, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, and Tel Aviv University. In 2010 she received the Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (The Order of Arts and Letters), one of France’s most prestigious honors.