Sunday, December 22, 2019

A Response to "The Wall" (a.k.a "the Separation Barrier")

During my time in Chicago, an annual tradition was the Good Friday Justice Walk.

In 2014, the group of Palestine solidarity activists I worked with did a project to help people learn about and imagine the impact of the Wall (also known as the Separation Barrier) in Israel.

Palestinians and visitors from throughout the world have added their own street art, graffiti, and public art to the Wall, as a sign of protest, an invitation to peace, and a critique of the lack of global intervention. Our project consisted of making a series of posters that replicate the art on the Wall. Here's an example:

(I first became sensitized to the importance of wall-art-that-protests-the-wall -- the power of art to demand a new, liberated reality -- in an essay my sister wrote about the Berlin Wall in the late 1980s.)

I have posted photos of the other wall boards we created below.

When placed side-by-side, the boards created a replica (in miniature) of the barrier wall:

"The Women Weep" in the shadow of the containment wall
34th Annual 8th Day Good Friday Justice Walk in Chicago

You can read about the project on the blog of the ELCA Metro Chicago Synod Working Group on the the Middle East.

The project had important "before" and "after" aspects, too.

Making the boards was half the fun. Check out these photos of the "Wall" sign board painting workshops - March and April 2014

. . . and . . . several months after the event, Chicago area readers of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) publication The Lutheran got to read about the project in that publication (see image at right).

In 2015, I had a chance to see the barrier wall in person. It left me with an ineradicable determination that every Christian needs to become devote to the in-this-world work of liberation.

Resistance art on the wall -- Aida refugee camp, Palestine

Full set of photos
The Wall: posters created by the ELCA Metro Chicago Synod Working Group on the the Middle East for the Good Friday Justice Walk in Chicago in 2014.

"Now that I've seen it I'm responsible for it."

"U.S. aid: injustice anywhere is a threat
to justice everywhere. (MLK Jr.)"

"The wall is lame."

"An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind."


"ctrl + alt + del ... Forgive what you have done? ... ICAHD 2008"

"A country is not only what it does. It is also
what it tolerates. Kurt Tucholsky 1933"

"War is not the answer."

"Your heart is a weapon the size of your fist.
Keep fighting.
Keep loving."

"I am not a terrorist."

No comments:

Post a Comment