Coexistence Festival

Pieces of coexistence

Largest mosaic wall to be built at Gilboa Coexistence Festival; head of regional council wants Guinness Company to declare unique feat a world record

By Yuval Amir, YNet News, Agust 21, 2008

A mixed group of young Jewish and Arab children will try to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, together.

On August 26 the first-ever Gilboa Coexistence Festival will open. As part of the festival, a seven-foot high by 32-feet long, huge mosaic wall will be constructed. Jewish, Arab artists are to perform in the three-day August festival in north. Program includes: Performances, trips, family activities, food market and open houses. Full story

Lines from John Lennon’s song, “Imagine” in Hebrew, Arabic and English will be included in the work of art. The creators, who have been working on the project for the past two months are Jewish children from the Gan-Ner camp and Arab youngsters from the Maayan-Harod camp with the assistance of a professional studio.

The piece will be displayed by the festival’s participants at Maayan Harod, the Gilboa’s Taibe village and at the opening ceremony at Kibbutz Ein Harod Meuhad in northern Israel’s Jezreel Valley.

A mosaic of these proportions has most likely never been created before, and thus the festival’s organizers and Daniel Atar, head of the Gilboa Regional Council are planning to turn to the Guinness Company with a request that they acknowledge the unique mosaic as a world record. 

Jewish, Arab children together in mosaic (Photograph: H. Amurri)

Sara Meltzer, winner of the Knesset’s Prize for Coexistence Education, is conducting the creation of the mosaic and is responsible for planning the artistic instruction for the project.

Meltzer said that inviting the festival’s participants to create the mosaic, “is actually, the revival of an ancient artistic tradition and includes aesthetic and cultural values that reflect the lives of Jews and Arabs in Israel.

“The mosaic-creating process allows the entire population to actively and democratically cooperate in the creation, without distinction between levels of ability or talent. This mosaic is coexistence art.”

The Gilboa Coexistence Festival will open with a performance by legendary rock star Joe Cocker at the renovated Gilboa amphitheater.

The second night will include performances by Israeli artists, including David Broza, Hadag Nahash and Arab singer Mira Awad.

On the festival’s third night there will be a show honoring famous Arab female singers with performances by Lubna Salameh, Riham Hamdi, Zehava Ben and Sarit Hadad.

The festival will include additional activities, such as a Bible-Koran national contest for Jewish and Arab teens, an art and food fair in cooperation with Israel’s best chefs and singers Dana Berger, Yirmi Kaplan, Efrat Gosh and others. There will also be an extreme jeep tour for Jewish and Arab women. 

Source: YNet news

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