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Palestinian Artist Khaled Jarrar installs “Ladder Installation” at Infamous US/Mexico Border Crossing

1 year ago

Khaled Jarrar, a Palestinian artist, and part of the Culturunners 2016: The Campaign Trail project, has unveiled a new artistic installation made from stolen parts of the US / Mexico border wall.

“This work is a monument to the global issue of migration and the struggle of marginalized and displaced people to rise above the physical and psychological barriers that surround them,” says Jarrar.

Against the backdrop of the US Presidential election and the Pope’s recent visit to Juarez, Jarrar has been traveling along the US / Mexican border since January, 27th. This segment of the Culturunners 2016: The Campaign Trail , included community talks and pop-up events in San Diego, CA, at the San Diego Art Institute & Low Art Gallery; in Tijuana, MX at the La Caja Galeria; in Las Cruces, NM, at New Mexico State University, and in El Paso, TX and Juarez, Mexico, where Jarrar finished installing the Monument last week. Although Jarrar has not yet given the monument a name, local people are calling it, “Khaled’s Ladder.”

“In creating this monument, I want to connect communities and explore comparisons and common concerns between this wall and the wall I live with every day in my home city of Ramallah, Palestine.” States Jarrar, “I was raised under the Israeli occupation. I was trained as a soldier, but I broke free and became an artist. I travelled to Mexico just days before the Pope’s visit and created a ladder from piece that I took from the U.S.-Mexico separation wall, as a bridge between two people and snub to Mr. Trump who doesn’t believe in bridges, only walls.”

Jarrar, in the US for the first time, is developing No Man’s Land, a project that explores the politics of border control and human mobility in the South West United States and Mexico. In 2015 Jarrar was famously barred from entering the United States to attend a landmark exhibition featuring his work at the New Museum, in New York. Jarrar was stopped by Israeli Security Forces and prevented from leaving his native Palestine to attend the event. Unable to leave Palestine he managed to join a panel discussion at the Museum via Skype and promised to make the trip to the US in the future.

“Khaled is an artist not afraid to tell powerful stories direct from the frontline of contested communities,” says Stephen Stapleton, the co-founder of Culturunners. “Against the backdrop of Donald Trump and the GOP’s increasingly anti-migrant statements, Khaled’s artwork offers an alternative perspective on the issue.”

Elena Scarpa

  • Photo by John Mireles Photo by John Mireles
  • Photo by John Mireles Photo by John Mireles
  • Photo by John Mireles Photo by John Mireles

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