Two Eagles.
Glazed Ceramic

Nesher factories were founded in 1925 to fulfill Herzl’s vision of building the new Jewish state. Nesher is Hebrew for Eagle. The Israeli eagle is a symbol of a new form of masculinity that the Zionist movement wanted to create, as a counter to the antisemitic image of Jews in exile. This then-new gendered symbol contains both the memory of the Biblical land and the vision of a new state. After the Nakba, the Palestinian residents in Israel became the workers who built the new state. Therefore the cement bags were designed with Arabic writing on them, despite their Zionist goal. For Palestinians, the cement bags symbolize colonization and occupation. The bags in the piece were hand-painted to look like the original cement bags that my grandfather lifted for more than 50 years of labor; they caused him health problems and damaged his back. The material transformation of bags in this piece is making the cement bags eternal, and the work is a memorial to the Palestinian laborers.