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Embryo 2019, 2019

Embryo (2019) is part of the Wounded Land Series of works originating during the Second Intifada when Closure maps of Jerusalem were cut and then dressed in gauze. Usually a medical dressing used to heal wounds, gauze became a medium used in works and performances to wrap people, trees and monuments, this time to “heal” historical and national wounds inscribed in the geography of the map, the landscape and the body.

Similarly to the Grafted Maps, I relate in this work to a Palestinian map entitled: ‘The Holy Land, Palestine, and Israel,’ produced by the Palestine Mapping Center, edited in 2010 and sold as touristic maps in the Old City of Jerusalem.

This Embryo-Map is part of the “Grafted Land” Series, a series in which segments of conflicted areas are first surgically removed from the body of the map, then dressed and finally stitched with a green thread.

In the present work, like in Twin Embryos (2017-8), the severed segment, bearing an uncanny resemblance to an embryo, depicts the historical area of Judea & Samaria in Mandatory maps, also known as the West Bank since 1948, lacking yet a definite name and political status, this Embryo-map is here connected to a disembodied motherland by umbilical green threads.


Ariane Littman