Third Edition of Qalandiya International Set to Launch

Ramallah - 4 October 2016: Qalandiya International’s Steering Committee has announced that its third edition, ‘This Sea is Mine’ launches on Wednesday, 5 October, with the participation of 16 cultural and art organizations and over 200 local and international artists and other contributors.

During the official press conference that was held at Khalil Sakakini Cultural Center in Ramallah, members of the Steering Committee said that the inauguration will take place simultaneously in Haifa, Gaza, Beirut, Amman and London, and other openings and events will continue in Jerusalem, Ramallah and Bethlehem until October 31.

Commenting on this year’s theme, Mahmoud Abu Hashhash, director of the Culture and Arts program at the A.M. Qattan Foundation, said Qalandiya International chose the theme of ‘return’ because the Palestinian Nakba (catastrophe) is still ongoing and is being reproduced in various forms, which makes the question about ‘return’ a central and current one, especially because it could be said that the issue has become empty slogans that we hear during political ceremonies and which lack enough seriousness. Here, we see our role as cultural institutions to keep asking the central questions.” On the choice of the idea and title of ‘This Sea is Mine’, Abu Hashhash said the sea can bring the idea of return from politics and its limitations into the realm of obviousness.

Eyad Barghouti, Director of the Arab Culture Association, said Qalandiya International is proud of two achievements this year: firstly, the continuation of the partnership in Qalandiya’s consortium has meant the sharing of resources while maintaining independence, despite the fragmented geography Palestinians have to contend with. And secondly, the significance, in relation to the theme, of the new partnerships and the expansion of Qalandiya outside of Palestine.

On her part, Aline Khoury from Al Ma’mal Foundation gave a briefing about the Qalandiya International exhibitions which touch upon the theme both directly and indirectly, and talked about the variety of works that will be presented.

Qalandiya International was founded in 2012 as a joint contemporary art event that takes place every two years across Palestinian cities and villages. Qi aims to place Palestine on the world’s cultural map by producing a series of exhibitions, as well as performances, talks, film screenings, workshops and tours, that open up channels for dialogue and exchange, both locally and internationally.

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