Bear Jews

When we first encountered Zack Balber's work, he was exhibiting photos of hookers at the Spinello Gallery. He'd arranged to split sales with their pimps after paying the streetwalkers $10 for a "date" to pose for him. "Tamim," his first solo show at Fredric Snitzer Gallery, opens on October 5. Balber's subjects do not look like the squeaky-clean Bear Jews typically drafted for the Bislamach Brigade of the Israeli Defense Forces. In fact, a portrait depicts a notorious E-thug who mocked Miami-Dade cops on YouTube, making national news and earning him time in the slammer. The 27-year-old Balber spoke to us about his own Bear Jew brotherhood, how attending school in Pittsburgh made him forsake his heritage, and the spiritual reawakening inspired by his project.
Tuesdays-Sundays, 10 a.m. Starts: Oct. 7. Continues through Nov. 5, 2011


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