19 November 2010

First the Land

Israel and Palestine. Oh, where to begin.

As with all of the prints in this series about fences and walls, I begin with the land. I wanted to find a spot along the Separation Fence that would tell the story in a nutshell, so first I went to Google maps to see if the fence is visible in satellite photos. You bet it is!

A small portion of Israel's Separation Wall (Google maps)

On Google maps I virtually floated above the wall, tracking it northward from Jerusalem until I found an area that was particularly perplexing. It was the area around a Palestinian city called Qalqiliya where the newly built wall quite clearly creates "peninsulas" of Palestinian land that for all intents and purposes trap the people inside. Here's what I saw (the squiggly grey line that runs through the center of the image is the wall):


I wanted to confirm that this was really what was going on there, so I looked for maps of the wall online. I found a beautiful detailed PDF map from 2008 at B'Tselem.org. Here's the portion that roughly corresponds to the Google view I had captured, confirming the path of the wall there:

B'Tselem - Map of the Separation Barrier in the West Bank - February 2008

Here's what the Separation Wall looks like from the ground:


Now that's a wall!

This week I carved a couple of blocks just to define these two areas that are separated by the wall and I started printing yesterday. I'll fill you in on that process next week.


Ellen Longo said...

Yeah, that's a wall alright. It reminds me of the one in my neck of the woods - the one between El Paso and Juarez, the one that armed men patrol day and night, walking back and forth as we shop at the local farmer's market. Yes, even here in America.

dewatobay said...

depressing - i admire your ability to press on and find the facts that leads to your art.

Kit said...

Your work is so enlightening!