In the fall of 2016, el-Atlal held its first residency in Jericho, and was happy to invite three artists and a researcher to come and work for a month.
Hacène Belmessous is a French independent researcher whose interest revolves around questions of urbanism. He is the author of numerous essays and books. He is a member of the editorial board of the annual review l’Esprit des Villes, published by In Folio.
During the residency, he wished to pursue this long-term project by looking at Palestinian cities in general, and Jericho in particular, investigating specifically about what they were to become as public cities. He conducted field work with many actors of Palestinian civil society. This process – which he acknowledges leads him beyond traditional sociological processes – enabled him to cover the space of Jericho by using diverse points of view. His research work will be used as material for his next book.
Joseph Hodali & Reem Jubran
Joseph Hodali is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker and visual artist. While video producer/editor at the UC Berkeley Multicultural Community Center he co-led film and design workshops for students and artists in the San Francisco Bay Area. Joseph holds a degree in Rhetoric and Film from the University of California Berkeley and currently works as a freelance photographer and graphic designer in California.
Reem Jubran is a Palestinian-American filmmaker and photographer. She first began experimenting with film photography as a teenager when she would travel to Palestine during the summers. Upon entering university, Reem transferred her photography skills over to digital video and produced three short films—all revolving around conflicts involving the Palestinian narrative. Graduated in Film & Media from the University of California, Berkeley, her films today explore the link between identity and space.
Both artists wanted to collaborate to film three short movies in Jericho. These movies are nourished by the stories the inhabitants of the city shared with them. In their own way, they interrogate the specific place the city of Jericho has in the imaginary and physical space of Palestinians.
Extract from the synopsis of one of the three films made during the residency: Mother Date depicts the fever dream of a young Jericho date factory worker who falls ill just as a diseased harvest of date fruit halts work at her factory.
Éric Stephany is a French artist. He graduated in architecture and was trained in Law and Art History, and started to practice interventions in galleries, in art centers and institutions. Following the romantic concept of Einfühlung (empathy), his work tries to underline the way we project onto architectural masses that surround us the emotions they induce.
In Jericho, Éric Stephany had the opportunity to measure the archeological riches of Tell-es-Sultan, whose architectural elements are among the oldest urban ruins ever found. More specifically, he was interested by the presence of a staircase whose top ended with a view of the Mount of Temptation. The Ministry of Tourism informed the resident that no-one had gone into the staircase for twenty years. He strove to investigate the relationship between the inhabitants of ancient Jericho to their sky. This project is inscribed within a more general work on the apparatuses of rising, which he explored in Germany, in India, and elsewhere.
You can download the press release specific to the 2016, which introduces the residents and includes images of their work, here.
Foundation for Education and Franco-Arab Culture (FECFA)
FECFA, a foundation under the aegis of the Fondation de France, supports cultural exchanges between France and the Arab countries, and promotes the teaching of the Arabic language. Its objectives are thus subsidizing cultural activities or artistic projects linking the two cultures, and awarding grants to associations operating under French law having at least one year of operation. The FECFA was created in summer 2013, and has since contributed to the promotion of the teaching of the Arabic language, the translation of books from Arabic into French, and the review of both artistic and cultural projects.
Auberg-Inn is a guesthouse located at the feet of the Mount of Temptation, in Jericho. It features a spacious Arab stone-house and a lustrous garden where traditional irrigation, gardening and farming techniques are practiced, providing fresh ingredients for the meals.
Through their hospitality, the owners aim at encouraging community-based, cultural and environmental tourism in Jericho, in order to promote Palestinian way of living and Palestine as a cultural crossroad.
Auberg-Inn will host the el-Atlal residents and staff during the 2016 residency.