Gallery Al-Quds presented a new form of “virtual reality”—the reality of Palestine interpreted by artists in short and long-form videos and slide shows. Several Gaza artists have contributed films and images difficult for them to share outside its borders. Other artists created mini documentaries, metaphysical musings, hopeful fictions and painterly images of a reality that sometimes only they can see.
“Responding to an Iraq he finds unrecognizable, this figurative artist turns to still lifes painted as snapshots of life in the absence of figures, resulting in partial views of brooding environments. Yet the blossoms and leaves of Shayota’s floral bouquets reach toward the edges of paintings, refusing to submit.”
A collection of photographic night raid images was exhibited at Gallery Al-Quds September 30- October 14, 2016 providing a context for Israeli military night raids regularly performed in the village of Bil’in in the West Bank. The American Friends Service Committee initiated and produced Night Raid collaboration with the “Israeli Detention: No Way to Treat a Child Campaign.” Photojournalist Richard Cahan curated the exhibition.
“Our aim is that our people, who admire stars, will dare to look up and dream, to believe in goals to strive for, and develop a new sense of hope, community, beauty and faith.” – Rev. Dr. Mitri Raheb, President and CEO, Bright Stars of Bethlehem
Artists from the United States and abroad create work in all media exploring the concept of artists’ responses to various forms of censorship or political pressure specific to artistic production. The show takes its name from a 1980 Israeli law forbidding artwork of “political significance,” which banned art composed of the four colors of the Palestinian flag: red, green, white, and black. Palestinians were arrested for creating or displaying such artwork. The ban was lifted after the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993.
“Growing up in a garden of flowers … literally, as a child I was fascinated, taken by its diversity in shape and color, and feasted my eyes and never ignored…. As a photographer I always carried my camera with me and always on the lookout for flowers. No matter what assignments I had I always noticed the flower everywhere.
Calligraphy is more than beautiful Arabic handwriting. It is the imaginative expression of individual creativity, the area of aesthetics where skill meets genius. Primarily a means for worshipping the Creator, the Arabic language is organically linked to the Qur’an. Thus both words and the forms of words take on power greater than their individual entities. It is from this that ornamental calligraphy stems.
The symbol known as the Hamsa, or Hand of Fatima, in Arab and Middle Eastern culture, is also a potent symbol in cultures around the world, from Asia, Africa, Latin America and even to the tribal cultures of Native Americans. This exhibition will explore the origins, symbolism and interpretations of this potent design with objects from all these cultures, with examples and an audience-interactive lecture.