STREETS AND MARKETS, 2013
Led by Diana Gilon at Tufts University, Acrylic on canvas 60" x 72" 2013
The design for this work came from a live meeting with students that had recently returned from a short trip to Israel. The artwork is a response to their experience on this journey. Students had so many differing opinions about the country, each one a genuine and passionate response that was equally as unique and thought out as the last.
Each idea came with the weight of political, religious and cultural origins creating a chaotic list of weighted ideals that mimicked well the turmoil that challenges the country's very existence to this day. Acknowledging these challenges, the whole group still agreed that there was an immeasurable beauty they experienced there. They described it as a shining light amid the chaos.
A very special part of Israel that mimics this chaos and the beauty within it, is its markets. The Israeli market or shuk is a staple in Israeli culture and shopping in one is an encounter that shouldn’t be missed. Always overcrowded and disorganized, the shuk houses a wide variety of goods, very delicious local produce and prepared foods. Shopping at the shuk can be stressful to say the least, but congruently the experience exposes onlookers to the most diverse populations in Israel and a richness that is immeasurable.
Abstract maps are also referenced within the artwork because they represent the physical neighborhoods of the country's inhabitants. They are filled with the twisted and again, disorganized streets that represent the small towns and cities in the country that are home to so many.
The mural was created in Tufts main student center. All students and staff that passed by were encouraged to help create this artwork. A large, diverse group of undergraduate and graduate students eagerly participated.