The artists collective I am part of, Hagigit, has joined the Train Theatre once again to celebrate Purim. Just like our cooperation last year, we set up a photography studio and took pictures of well-costumed kids. The parents were obviously delighted since these were their kids, but I was anxiously waiting for that one photo to transcend being cute into being really interesting. This doesn’t happen often, mind you, but it did happen before. Photos captured today can be found on Hagigit’s Flickr page.
The first day already gone, you can still join us today and tomorrow in Jerusalem. Admission is 30 NIS including the play “The Cubes Circus”. More details here.
Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno, The Yes Men, have an unusual hobby: posing as top executives of corporations they hate. Armed with nothing but thrift-store suits, they lie their way into business conferences and parody their corporate nemeses by basically doing everything that they can to wake up their audiences to the danger of letting greed run the world. I have watched their 2003 documentary and was hoping to catch their newest film, when I found out they will be protesting Israeli policies by withdrawing from the Jerusalem Film Festival in solidarity with the ‘Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign for Palestine’. Here’s an excerpt from their letter to the JFF:
[...] This decision does not come easily, as we feel a strong affinity with many people in Israel, sharing with them our Jewish roots, as well as the trauma of the Holocaust, in which both our grandfathers died. Andy lived in Jerusalem for a year long ago, can still get by in Hebrew, and counts several friends there. And Mike has always wanted to connect with the roots of his culture.
But despite all our feelings, we cannot abandon our mission as activists. In the 1980s, there was a call from the people of South Africa to artists and others to boycott that regime, and it helped end apartheid there. Today, there is a clear call for a boycott from Palestinian civil society. Obeying it is our only hope, as filmmakers and activists, of helping put pressure on the Israeli government to comply with international law.
[...] To those who want to see our film, savlanut and sabir (patience)! And for all the rest of us, a little LESS patience, please.
L’shanah haba’ah beyerushalayim,
Andy and Mike
The Yes Men
After reading their full letter I still disagree with their action but I do so respectfully. Here’s what we’ll be missing:
It’s the Jewish holiday of Purim, and Hagigit, the artists collective I am part of, cooperated with Jerusalem’s Train Theatre for a Purim Spiel celebration for kids. The events started with a show called ‘Gulliver – The Journey to Lilliput’ by Amit Drori, based on the classic book by Jonathan Swift – and continued with us. We designed and erected a photography studio to correlate with Swift’s ideas of big and small, allowing the audience to experience being as tall as buildings or feel tinier than usual. We photographed the costumed kids and using our lean mean printing machines granted them a moment frozen in time.
Here’s a small selection of the photos taken today:
The Jerusalem Biblical Zoo received new guests last week, called Collared Peccary, an American mammal whose looks resemble those of a pig. This would not matter much, only that in a city that is sacred to three religions, two of which consider pigs to be unclean animals who should be avoided – in a city like Jerusalem, a big is a pig deal a pig is a big deal.
That is why the zoo management put up a sign, which includes the regular informative stuff every visitor should know, but also the sentence “This is not a pig” in four languages: Hebrew, Arabic, English, and (get this) Yiddish for the Orthodox Jews. In Israel, even a walk in the park is no walk in the park.