Facing the Wall
The Palestinian-Israeli Barriers
Avinoam Shalem and Gerhard Wolf
Photographs by Dror Maayan
The appearance of the segregation wall in the landscape of Jerusalem is inescapable. The wall runs along the eastern districts and hills of Jerusalem and seems to crawl snake-like and infiltrates the very veins of the city. It merges with the old and modern streets and structures of Jerusalem and dictates a new pattern of urban behavior, a storyline that fails to distinguish between past and present. Facing the Wall aims at displaying the Palestinian-Israeli segregation walls as objects of artistic desire. A space of artistic interaction and a canvas on which artists exhibit their works, be it local Palestinians and Israelis, or international. The Studies on the Palestinian-Israeli walls of segregation have tended to focus on the unsettling political and social outcomes of their erections. This study, in contrast, sheds light on the walls as public spaces of tragedy on all sides of which artists act and beholders look, and as a palimpsest that records varied and complicated layers of the realities of the region.