ustura films wrote:
to be said of institutions doing joint art/media programmes
with the Israelis?
Emily and Anton.
I am writing
to you concerning the boycott proposition of Israeli Art institutions
and of exhibitions and cultural events in Israel.
as put forward can be divided into three parts:
of Israeli Art institutions and of exhibitions and cultural
events in Israel.
2) Support for Israeli Artists who are active against the
3) A political statement denouncing the inhumane Israeli occupation
Artist living and working in Israel I fully endorse the third
part of the appeal: the denouncation of the occupation and
all its violent incursions on human rights. That said, I think
a boycott might have deeper negative implications in the long
run, ultimately imposing on a positive Art debate in Israel
about Israeli policies.
of the Apartheid regime in South Africa (which anyway censored
all artistic activity) left within no artistic debate about
its racialism. Even with all the current maladies of the Israeli
art world and its institutes - attempting to canonize a local,
Jewish-Ashkenazi, secular, western oriented, art history,
a canon that excludes any artists who differ by definition,
subject, question, or raise doubt and do not fit this 'National'
objective - Israel still allows a margin for an open and critical
art discourse, enabling incompliant art activities to exist,
sometimes even within these institutes.
must be used and widened. A general boycott will cause more
harm than good, therefore it is crucial to check each activity
per se. We should judge each Art work, each artist and each
institute by their moral standing.
a debate completely or turning it into a neutral or one sided
presentation has been the object of Fundamentalist, Conservative
and Fascist regimes throughout history.
A boycott of this kind may leave the artistic debate in Israel
only in the hands of 'neutral entertainers' who in their neutrality
endorse the Israeli policies or worse. It would abandon the
space to pro-Zionist artists who will increase their artistic
influence in pampering public opinion.
that have no political stance and who would ignore the boycott
anyway, would carry on their activity, leaving the feeling
of business as usual, and in actuality endorse the current
the support for Israeli artists who are against the occupation,
I have some reservations as well. First, one must distinguish
between the different art fields in their relation to political
issues. A generalization of all 'arts' will damage areas that
do have an active political debate, such as the 'plastic arts'.
Be specific in what areas of art, and in what way is the issue
of the occupation dealt with.
important to support artists by enabling them to show their
work and by creating a public debate. Create an international
debate about art that is practiced in Israel with all the
artists in lists, or indirectly creating a political artistic
criteria will create a shallow and predictable art debate.
This will only affect the epidermis of the Israeli cultural
discourse, leaving the core negative practices immune and
artists who do take a political stand will be left alone without
any international backing or dialogue in the internal debate.
than start a boycott, initiate political art activities in
and about Israel. Artists that would support the boycott would
usually have a political standing in their work. Let them
come, participate, speak out and stir up a debate even in
the art institutes. Keep the debate open, international and
international art world speak out, stir up a debate while
it is still possible. In Israel as well as anywhere else.
Israeli art and artists be seen and heard.
Israeli artists and art institutes face the political issues
when in or out of Israel.
Turn these issues into the touchstone of Israeli art. The
Israeli public must deal with the consequences of its own
government's policies, internally and externally.
and artists always be open to debate and scrutiny. Often bad
art can arouse an excellent debate, and not all art under
political pretexts and titles is of great artistic interest,
nor is it always capable of changing our attitude and way
of looking at reality. One could even say that political art
that follows a constant and premeditated outlook may stagnate
the art discourse.
-- Re: boycott
to say that I think that the boycott of any arts institution
not directly involved in specific propaganda exercises
on behalf of a government is wrong in and of itself.
The arts are sometimes the only source of differing
opinions in a society under stress. Artists are individuals
with individual opinions. They may even agree with you.
Parallel boycotts of arts organizations in the United
States because of say, the war in Afghanistan, is not
really something you would recommend, and with good
reason. I would not endorse this boycott and I never
will endorse a boycott of artists.
people sign this petition it might be a good idea to check
how widespread support for it is under Palestinian artists.
As of 2 months ago some of the mixed Palestinian/Israeli festivals
and other art initiatives were still going strong. This may
well have changed in the last few weeks (and/or those initiatives
may be part of this boycott petition), but it would be a shame
to boycott one of the last cooperative efforts out of existence.-
If I can't
dance I don't want to be part of your revolution -- Emma Goldman
-- COMMENT ON BOYCOTT Appeal
angelika middendorf berlin, april 17, 2002
in most appeals, which you've listed. but, i do not
agree and cannot sign your appeal: BOYCOTT OF ALL ISRAELI
ART INSTITUTIONS, because i don't see the logical consequence,
that this would help to END THE OCCUPATION. that would
mean to me, to support a cultural isolation at all,
with the result? let me get back to one special activity,
which you've also mentioned as a supportive one: the
bus tour of the international delegation of nobel price
holders was such an important step for both sides, because
an international voice was created for the palestinian
people even an international discussion was enforced
by this! but a boycott of Israeli art institutions would
mean, to freeze any other language than that of guns,
tanks, bombings. but, let me underline following: i
see an urge to raise the international voice, that both
sides have to stop immediately: the isralian occupation
and! the palestinian bombing attacks are to be stopped!
describe my position in following: for me, it was so important
to hear Prof.Dr. Sumaya Farhat-Nasar, who is a peace activist
from palestine, when she stated: "that the only chance
to solving the current spiral of violence between the palestinian
and israelian people is, that both have to find a way to accepting
and respecting each other, because both are living in the
same country, both own the land. the people have to have the
same rights on the basis of two equal states, to provide a
peaceful future, freedom, education, respect... in Palestine
and Israel. after the step is made - to respecting their neighbours
- the following should bring the people together, to make
a dialogue possible and to learn from each other, from the
rich cultural heritage each of us has". she also said,
that "the biggest and most complicated current problem
is, to create new hope and new visions for the people, where
both - the palestians and the israelis - parties can trust
in." but, for instance, currently she is so sad to see,
how many young women (who were among the participants in her
seminars to create an understanding in the israeli culture,
and to support a dialogue) gave up their hope and joined the
terrorists, which is dangerously understood to becoming a
martyr for freedom of the future state palestine." of
course she can see, "that too many Palestine's lost everything
even they lost the hope to solve the situation under siege
a horror: to create a key to freedom with human suicide-bombs!
this suicide-bombing attacks is such an alarming sign, under
which level of existence a society has fallen. it is more
than alarming, how important an international diplomatic intervention
is needed to save the people, evenmore to provide a supportive
concept to rebuild the infrastructure, which is necessary
to operate in terms of politics, culture, education ... at
least, anything which is necessary to support a state palestine.
also very alarming, that all the peace-contracts where
answered with terror. it is obvious, that the israeli
people are traumatized by all this terror attacks. it
is not a political weapon at all, it is the worst form
of disrespect against the basic human rights. i really
wonder, how big is the respect for humans, the own life
of the "ready to suicide ones", who take innocent
people with them straight to death? how can the israeli
trust arafat, if he says, that he will stop the bombing
attacks but they are still continuing? is a whole generation
just raised to end up as living bombs? how strong is
the majority behind arafat, to support a dialogue? when
i was in israel last may for novalog, a cultural exchange
project between media artists from berlin and tel aviv,
(and aside from a valuable experience and dialogue between
the artists), i experienced the first time what it means
in fact, to be surrounded from an atmosphere of aggression,
to feel a permanent stress that any moment and everywhere
it could be the end, either in the bus, cafe, club,
in the streets, anywhere. i experienced what does the
weapon of permanent fear in fact mean: psychoterror!
and what effect it has on the people, is obviously not
a constructive one which supports an understanding.
it is a very destructive level!
miss in your resolution is the very urgent appeal to the palestinians
to stop immediately the self-bombing attacks. it is not a
political sign at all, this is murder to innocent israelian
people! it leads to nowhere, just pushing the spiral of horror
one more time.
deeply appreciate for a more constructive appeal, to
modify your headline. why to boycott israeli art institutions?
it seems to be important to mention, there are no israelian
art institutions at all, to be boycotted! especially
in this times, while we see us confronted with such
difficult and complicated situation, we as artists should
take this small number of possibilities we have, to
push an international dialogue! that means, the dialogue
with israelian artists is to be supported and continued,
but as well with the palestinian artists!!! aren't both
voices needed and valuable to be heard?
this reasons i would deeply appreciate to find following appeals
included to your (modified) Appeal:
THE ISRAELI OCCUPATION
THE PALESTINIAN SUICIDE-BOMBING-ATTACKS IMMEDIATELY!
THE SPRIRAL VIOLENCE BETWEEN PALESTINE AND ISRAEL!
A POLITICAL AND CULTURAL DIALOGUE - SUPPORT AN EQUAL
AND PEACEFUL STATE OF PALESTINE AND ISRAEL ...
i deeply hope, that the international diplomatic intervention
will lead very soon to a longsighted solution and future
concept, but it will be only possible through a peaceful
support of all palestinian and israelian people living
in the country and all the internationals ouside, to
support the goverment of Palestine and Israel and to
construct the future for both states!
and all the best!
-- Re: Comments ON BOYCOTT Appeal...
2 resposes to Anjelicas e-mail: from Emily in Ramallah
Palestinian and an Israeli who called for this appeal, as
well as we Israelis and Palestinians who signed the appeal
have found a way to "respect and accept each other"
and that is through justice and basic human rights.
makes very clear not only your ignorance of the current crises
but also your lack of knowledge on the relationships we Palestinians
and Israelis have with each other.
were in Israel last May, not only were you completely isolated
from any contact with any Palestinian artists or arts institutions,
you were engaged only in dialogue with one side. You did not
even visit a single Palestinian city. Did you ever even think
know that currently there are peace activists from all over
the world most notably Italy, France, Sweden, Belgium and
America who are being denied entry into the country??? Why?
Because they truly beleive in peace and non-violence. What
kind of a country denies entry to International people from
all over the world who are peace activists? Do you understand
how very dangerous this is? Not allowing Internationals to
see for themselves what is happening? You should ask yourself
what are they hiding?
note - the Palestinains have been BEGGING for International
observers and an International protection force to come here
and help. All the world agrees that this is a necessity but
this will not happen because Israel does not agree. Why would
anyone not allow in United Nations International Observers
unless they were hiding something? And the USA is going to
veto it so we are stuck here with no protection, nothing from
Sharon's killing fields.
know what its like not to be allowed out of your home for
20 days straight? To watch your child get killed because they
were peeking out the window? To watch your home being demolished?
to have your dead family memebers rotting inside your living
room next to you while the Israelis will not allow any medical
access or humanitarian aid to reach you? To watch Israeli
soldiers kill people when they lift the curfew? to have soldiers
enter your home destroy everything and steal all your money
and jewelry? To be under constant bombardment by F-16's, Apache
gun ships, tanks and machine guns? To be killed going to work?
crossing a checkpoint? Having absolutely no accesss to food,
water or medical care? To watch people being crushed under
the rubble of buildings being bombed indiscriminatly?? to
listen to the Red Cross beg the Israelis to let them save
45 people trapped under the rubble of Jenin.... who have been
asking for help for over a week now with no food or water.....and
the ISraelis still say no? while at the same time denying
the massacre of innocent women and children??
understand the magnitude of the current crises? Are you not
following any news? Have you not heard that Israel is NOT
allowing any human rights groups, or any humanitarian aid
into the West Bank. That they have enforced a media black-out?
That they are arresting and shooting journalists? That massacres
are occuring all over the place? that Israel is in violation
of humanitarian law, international law and the Geneva convention?And
as far as the art world is concerned, do you know that all
the Palestinian arts galleries and institutions as well as
are being right now systematically destroyed in every city
on the West Bank? That all our records are being burnt?
hope that you and others like you, will support us Palestinians
and Israelis, living in the country and out, and all the internationals
outside in our cry for help and solidarity during this time
of ethnic cleansing and that history will not repeat itself.
and all the best!
Raed -- Re: Comments ON BOYCOTT Appeal...
From Raed Andoni - filmmaker in Bethlehem
I just but the phone now, after a long conversation with Avi Mugrabi,
an Israeli filmmaker, to find your letter.
For all the last 19 days and I am living inside few rooms under the curfew Of the new/old occupiers of my town Bethlehem, for all that 19 day, I used to have a daily long conversation with Avi, why not? I have a lot of time to do, and he feels good to discuss things from inside and to know more.
Any how I do not feel I have to explain more for you, what is the
deep real mean of living under curfew, also no need to explain
for you what Occupation means, or how people has been killed
inside their houses around etc. I just want to tell you, even
AVI him self as an Israeli, feel a shame to tell me what you
wrote in your naïve letter.
Tel Aviv's atmosphere during May!! You are invited to
experience one hour inside my town now, or why didn't you
experienced to pass just one Israeli checkpoint out of 270
ones which block our roads for the last 20 months.
occupied us, Angelica
tried the peace process for more than 10 years, we got nothing
but more suffer and discrimination, do you know why? Because
the Israeli mentality didn't changed at all, it is the same
colonial occupier's mentality, either during the years of
our suffering under military occupation or our years of suffer
during peace talks.
back to the history and find how people get their freedom.
please think for one moment why that a 19 years old girl turned
to be a
suicide bomber, do you think for fun out of that? Just let
them leave here
one thing or one hope to live for, she or he will not be.
best and take care
-- Open Call for emergency exhibition
> From: Dana Levy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Date: Wed, 17 Apr 2002 16:38:29 +0200
> To: Galit Eilat_xs4all <email@example.com>
> Subject: call for
> the digital artlab http://www.digitalartlab.org.il
> an Israeli art center for new media is in the process
of putting together
> an emergency exhibition showing the current situation
in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which will also get
main Israeli newspaper > coverage.
> If you can contribute Photographs, witnesses texts, video
> please contact
> pass this message on to anyone who you think can help.
> Thank you for your cooperation.
> # distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use
> # <nettime> is a moderated mailing list for net
> # collaborative text filtering and cultural politics
of the nets
> # more info: firstname.lastname@example.org
and "info nettime-l" in the msg body
> # archive: http://www.nettime.org
-- Update on Boycott
the benefit photos link are 4 updates related to the appeal
boycott on israeli art institutions.all the promised artists
participated in the benefit performance tonight at the Knitting
Factory. i have to admit i cannot put a name to every picture,
but i think i did get a picture of each performer, and that
i'll have all the names soon. photos are already up at art/020421.html
many images, it may take a while to load.
to the appeal to boycott israeli art institutions keep flowing
in. 175 artists from australia, austria, belgium, canada,
egypt, france, germany, india, italy, the netherlands, palestine,
sweden, switzerland, the u.k., and the u.s. are already confirmed
and posted at petitions/020407.html
documentary film festival became a center of attention twice
this week. first when palestinian filmmaker Georges Khlifei
resigned from his position as a judge in the film contest.
Khlifei actually intended to participate, but having come
to tel-aviv after 17 days under siege in ramallah, and having
learned about the character of the festival, and that minister
of culture Matan Vilnai was to open it... he submitted a letter
of resignation, criticizing the occupation in very clear words.
i hope i'll have a copy of this letter for ya'll soon.
it became known that swedish director Peter Torbiornsson,
whose film, The Lovers of San Fernando, participated in the
festival's international contest, wishes to withdraw his film
from the festival for political reasons. According to Haaretz,
festival management told Torbiornsson he couldn't. Torbiornsson
then submitted his own letter to the festival, berating the
israeli government for its occupation policy, and calling
for peace. he demanded the letter be read before each screening
of his film. festival management accepted his request, but
kept its promise for two screenings only. before the 3rd screening
it got warning from sponsors. Mif'al Hapayis, israeli state
lottery, withdrew the big 75,000 shekel contest prize. two
other sponsors, israeli 2nd authority for television and radio,
and satelite tv channel Yes, said they were reconsidering
stage festival management gave in, and cancelled the 3rd screening
planned for Torbiornsson's film.
israeli artists support peace, but IUPA, the union of israeli
performing artists, has cancelled a gala concert in honor
of singer Yafa Yarkoni, planned for 29 april. why??? because
Yarkoni, one of the older pillars of this community, and a
holder of the state's highest civil mark of honor, the israel
prize, spoke out. in an interview to the army radio, Yarkoni
said expressed support for the refuseniks, and horror at the
government's policy in the occupied territories. singer Hanan
Yovel, IUPA chair, found her criticism even more horrifying,
and called the concert off.the following links have more details
on this. i'm afraid they are in hebrew only, and most mac
users can't read them (the Khlifei story was reported on Haaretz
in hebrew, but was not selected for the english edition, which
is not at all surprising):