Hanna Farah-Kufer Bir’im is showing work as part of the exhibition Landsc(R)ape: Representation Matrixes at Petach-Tikva Museum of Art. The exhibition, curated by Sigal Barkai, combines works from the collection with work by a range of contemporary artists of varied cultural backgrounds. It explores the tension between private and subjective experiences of landscape and official versions of what a landscape is or should be.
Barkai describes Farah’s work as follows:
Farah’s delicate etchings—some containing the word “home,” others alluding to excerpts of typical Palestinian landscape, flora and fauna—are bathed in nostalgia, solitude, and yearnings for a place that was lost before he ever came into this world.
This lost place, in Farah’s work, is the village of Kufer-Bir’im:
The story of the uprooted Arab residents of Ikrit and Bir’im has been the subject matter of scores of discussions in the Israeli government, supreme court, and parliament (Knesset). None, however, led to fulfillment of the promise given to the local inhabitants in October 1948, that they would be able to return to their villages if they agree to be evicted due to the war. The inhabitants of the village of Bir’im, to whose offspring Farah belongs, scattered in other villages in the Galilee, remaining Israeli citizens, but their yearning to return to their home never left them.
Image credit: Untitled (2009), Hanna Farah-Kufer Bir’im.
Posted by Michael Connor.