Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Peace Tents in Jerusalem


In an effort to salvage the tense relationship between Israel and France, the two countries have teamed up to provide a month of well-intentioned, though misguided cultural programs. This included the largest fireworks display ever staged over the Tel-Aviv skies. Apparently it also resulted in the largest traffic jams ever on Tel-Aviv roads. And somehow no one could ignore the fact that all that effort and money went up literally in a cloud of smoke.
In Jerusalem I caught the Peace Tents at the Hass Promenade. Not too many people were perusing the tents when I happened to stop by. Composed by French artist Clara Halter the tents consists of the word "peace" written in 50 different languages. The overall effect is soothing, with the tents glowing in the Jerusalem evening but then you walk in and the tents are empty. A metaphor for peace itself? Or maybe she ran out of languages.