Last spring, Roi Kuper drove down to the Gaza Strip in order to encompass it from East, West, North, and South. He positioned his tripod a few kilometers from the fence, at points allowed by the Israeli army, and began to photograph. The resulting landscapes show fields, the sky, and occasionally a barely perceptible line of houses. This line is Gaza, present on the ground, absent from Israeli consciousness. Kuper said then, “It's like a mirage - a city perched beyond the horizon, like Italo Calvino's Invisible Cities. We're used to seeing Gaza either in aerial photographs or in shots taken amid destroyed houses, but not from this distance. Not from the fields which are so immediate to those who live in this area. The question I keep asking myself is : what will grow in these fields?”
With the summer came a war which sent thousands to what was under the ground, on both sides. Kuper's project came to a halt, and he was left to re-read his images of open fields between the camera lens and the Palestinian horizon, knowing about what could not be seen but had been dug beneath those fields. After the cease-fire, he returned to the area. He hadn't yet photographed Gaza from the West - the sea - but this was no longer allowed, even from a distance. He shot new panoramas of the same fields, now deserted: clouds floating overhead, smoke or dust billowing on the horizon, and the occasional sound of gunfire.
Roi Kuper was born on Kibbutz Mefalsim in 1956.
All of his works in the exhibition are ink-jet prints, and come from the collection of the artist.
L.A. Mayer | The Museum for Islamic Art in Jerusalem
2, Hapalmach Street / +97225661291 / islamicart.co.il Sun - Mon 10am to 3pm, Sat 10am to 4pm, Sat 10am to 2pm
L.A. Mayer’s permanent collections constitute one of the most important exhibitions of Islamic art in the world.