Friday, 6 June 2014

The Separation Wall - Israel/Palestine

The Israeli West Bank barrier. 
A controversial project to say the least. The graffiti art says much about the current state of affairs.
This wall is still under construction  Most of these pics were taken in the West Bank, near the city of Bethlehem.

Banksy - Official title: "Wall & Peace".
(It's of course  a reference to the great novel "War and Peace" by Leo Tolstoy).

I've been a fan of Banksy for quite a while. He is often labeled the "Art Terrorist".
To quote Banksy himself:
“Some people become cops because they want to make the world a better place. Some people become vandals because they want to make the world a better looking place.”

You can see quite a few of his most famous works here in Bethlehem.
I love this image of a dove wearing a bullet-proof vest while holding a olive branch in its beak.
Also by Banksy. Its official title is "Armored Peace Dove". Painted 2007.
Its simplicity and universal message is clear: peace is fragile & in danger.The gun is drawn but the bullet hasn't been fired....... there is still a chance to keep the peace.

The walls are on average 8 metres high.(approx 26ft).

The "wall museum". It displays stories told by Palestinian women. ... stories of "suffering, oppression & resilience".

This image below is probably the most famous of Banksy's Palestinian images.
The picture of a young girl patting down a soldier is surprising in its role reversal.
This disparity is heightened by her small stature when compared to the heavily armed soldier.
His machine gun is cast aside to the right.
Banksy.: "The Girl & the Soldier" (painted 2005).

A bit about the artist Banksy. He is based in the UK. He is a pseudo-anonymous painter, film maker and political activist. His works generally combine humor with graffiti.

This is a quote from Wikipedia:
"According to author and graphic designer Tristan Manco and the book Home Sweet Home, Banksy "was born in 1974 and raised in Bristol, England. The son of a photocopier technician, he trained as a butcher, but became involved in graffiti during the great Bristol aerosol boom of the late 1980s." "

I picked up this little Christmas decoration while in Bethlehem.
It's hand carved from olive wood.
If Jesus was born today I wonder how the 3 wise kings get over that wall ???

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