Imprinted

Since 1967, an estimated 800,000 Palestinian olive trees have been destroyed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip by Israeli authorities and/or settlers.* But the strength of the olive tree’s root system is such that it can regenerate itself in spite of being chopped, bulldozed or torched.

In 2015, I traveled to the West Bank to quietly photograph olive and almond trees. My intention was to engage with the symbolic meaning of the trees and the families that maintained them. Following my trip, an unexpected signification surfaced: Due to a malfunction in my Hasselblad camera each photograph was imprinted with a thick black line running diagonally across either the upper-right or lower-left corner of the frame. I quickly understood these interruptive lines as an allegory of the occupation.

(Report by the Palestinian Authority and the Applied Research Institute Jerusalem)