\ Glimmer of a Grove Beyond
Visual journeys through the landscape: Curated selection from the Museum’s collection of Palestinian political posters
25 February–5 April 2020

Curated By: Adele Jarrar

Glimmer of a Grove Beyond explores representations of Palestinian land and natural geography through an array of political posters drawn from the Palestinian Museum’s permanent collection. The collection includes a set of 540 Palestinian political posters, produced between the late-1960s and early-1990s, which were collected and generously donated by ambassador Ali Kazak.

The curated show addresses the notion of landscape and the alterations inflicted on Palestine’s geography, sometimes represented through orientalist photography, and at times as lost geography or as fantasy. Those alterations shaped the political project and ideologies of the day, which in turn were reflected in the artistic and visual languages employed in posters.

Glimmer of a Grove Beyond aims to outline links among the various artistic styles and methods of landscape representation, in addition to their fluctuating relation to the contemporary political project and historical circumstance. It complements the Palestinian Museum’s preceding exhibition, Intimate Terrains, and offers an opportunity to examine the landscape through an additional, unique artform: the poster.

The show is divided into seven sections, classified according to iconography or topic: Sowing Liberation, Agency and Sanctity, Devastation as Landscape, Manifesting Palestine, Fida’i, Flowers and Anemones, and Reclaiming the Orange. Each section highlights distinct methods in which symbols or topics were employed, and sheds light on their relation to landscape.

The title, Glimmer of a Grove Beyond, was inspired by French author and activist Jean Genet’s memoirs, in which he recounts seeing the lights of the Galilee glimmering beyond the Jordanian frontier, where he was encamped with Palestinian fida’iyin in the early 1970s. Read more

Adele Jarrar (Palestine, 1992) is a visual culture writer and critic. She obtained her BA in architecture from Birzeit University in 2016 and is currently completing her master’s degree in art and cultural management at Leuphana University. Jarrar, whose work is informed by her interest in analysing the power structures underlying imagery, has had wide-ranging experience in design, research, writing, and curation.
She was commissioned to write for numerous platforms and magazines, including Lifta Volumes, Institute for Palestine studies, the Funambulist, 7iber, and the Art Columnist. She has also assisted in curating Cities Exhibition 5: Gaza Reconstruction, and City of whom?, and has recently contributed a story to Reworlding Ramallah: short sci-fi stories from Palestine.

Intimate Terrains: Representations of a Disappearing Landscape
April 2 – December 31, 2019

Intimate Terrains: Representations of a Disappearing Landscape explores the changing representation of landscape by Palestinian artists, and our relationship to place and location through the themes of erasure, fragmentation, distance and belonging. The exhibition brings together a spectrum of works which explore how representations of the landscape have evolved over the decades. The exhibition presents how loss and ongoing transformations of the landscape contour representations, along with addressing questions of the experience of distance from the homeland and exile.

Landscape has been a prominent subject matter in the work of Palestinian artists as it is a deeply layered terrain of inscriptions, memories and histories, which holds a central place in the identity of Palestinians. How do artists then negotiate collective and personal memory in relation to the representations of landscape? and how does the changing reality on the ground contour their images?  How does exile and different experiences of alienation shape the views of the landscape? How have artists engaged with the materiality of the land? And how do artistic practices and their intimate relationships to places manifest around a disappearing landscape? Read more

To view the exhibition themes and to explore some of the artworks, click here.




Embroidered jellayeh coat from Galilee, from the collection of Birzeit University Museum. Photo: Kayané Antreassian. For the Palestinian Museum. 

Labour of Love: New Approaches to Palestinian Embroidery
March 18, 2018 – December 31, 2018 

In a moment of heightened global conversation around women’s rights and dominion over their bodies, Labour of Love explores Palestinian embroidery through the lenses of gender, labour, symbol, commodity and class. Structured around these thematic poles, the exhibition traces Palestinian embroidery’s shift from an historic, individual practice, associated with self-expression, to a cultural artefact and marker of national heritage. The exhibition examined the politicisation of Palestinian embroidery, its circulation as image in paintings and posters, the implications of its commodification, and the nature of its production by NGOs today. 

Curated by Rachel Dedman, an independent curator and writer based in Beirut, Lebanon. Read more

Jerusalem Lives (Tahya Al Quds), August 2017

In light of what Jerusalem continues to face from exclusionary policies enforced by militarisation and closure, the Palestinian Museum has created a multi-faceted project and exhibition, Jerusalem Lives, which aims to focus on the living aspect of the city and support its people. The exhibition attempts to examine the city of Jerusalem as a case study metaphorically representing globalisation and its failures, and find answers to inspire a better future. Veering away from clichés, the exhibition exposes the neoliberal, colonial and imperial challenges imposed by the Israeli occupation that Jerusalem and its people are facing. Could the title Tahya Al Quds be transformed from a mere slogan into an invitation to present real content and support for life in the city? What are the stories of collective resistance? How do we make Jerusalem live?

This exhibition is curated by Reem Fadda and assistant curators Fawz Kabra and Yara Abbas. Read more


Photo by: Iwan Baan. © the Palestinian Museum. New Museums: Intentions, Expectations, Challenges, May 2017 

The “new museum” is confronted with the demanding task to mediate between the expectations and intentions of the different parties involved. It is participating in an extensive global network of research and cultural exchange. These increasingly complex conceptualizations of the “museum” and social transformations of recent decades entail more diverse demands towards the museum. Thus, more and more institutions position themselves as places of exchange and communication.

The Arts Centre Basel, on behalf of the Musées d'art et d'histoire in Geneva, Switzerland have developed an international exhibition about contemporary museum architecture which will be presented in Geneva from May 10 to August 27, 2017. In May 2016, The Palestinian Museum was selected for participation. The exhibition, ‘New Museums: Intentions, Expectations, Challenges’ is the third instalment in a series of international architecture exhibitions by the Arts Centre Basel.  It is preceded by: Museums for a New Millennium, May 2000, and Museums in the 21st Century, November 2016. The Palestinian Museum and Heneghan Peng architects have collaborated to prepare new and original material for exhibition.

The exhibition opened in the Musées d’Art et d’Histoire in Geneva, Switzerland, from May 10 to August 27, 2017.

A Museum for Palestine, 2017

The Palestinian Museum is partnering with the Institute of the Arab World (Institut du Monde Arabe) in Paris to organise an exhibition featuring a collection of the A Museum for Palestine Project. The exhibition will be held from Saturday 25 February till 26 March 2017. It will later be displayed in the Palestinian Museum in Birzeit in 2018 or 2019. The exhibition brought 50 art works donated by French artists in solidarity with the Palestinian people and includes paintings , historical photographs, and sculptures that reflect the diversity in contemporary art practices in the past decades.

The Project A Museum for Palestine was launched in France two years ago to form an art collection to be the nucleus of a future Palestinian national museum of modern and contemporary arts. A joint agreement on this regard was signed by the Palestinian Ambassador to the UNESCO, Mr. Elias Sanbar and the Institut du Monde Arab, represented by its director Jacques Lang.

A Museum for Palestine was inspired by a similar initiative during the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa, led by the renowned French artist Ernest Pignon Ernest member of the (Association d’Art Moderne et Contemporain en Palestine). Each artist offered one or several works of art in solidarity with the Palestinian people. The works were safely deposited in the care of the Institute of the Arab World (Institut du Monde Arab) awaiting their journey to their natural destination Palestine.

This partnership forms part of the Palestinian Museum’s vision to promote Palestinian cultural presence at world level and expand its local and international partnerships.


Introduction to the Palestinian Museums, 2014

Concept: the Palestinian Museum is presenting its own vision of archives via the project Introduction to the Palestinian Museums. This project is a pioneering experiment whose participants include both museums inside and outside Palestine, and those that take Palestine as a subject for research. Via preliminary activities connected to development and continuity, it ultimately seeks to shed light on the museum experience in general. Specifically, it explores various aspects of museum experience in the participating museums and their special collections, placing them within their societal and cultural contexts and demonstrating the extent of their contribution to the colourful mosaic of Palestinian cultural life.

These museums (and various personal collections) serve to document, via their different spaces, collections and visions, details of the philosophy and reasoning behind their original establishment. In this project, we hope in this project to raise questions about what distinguishes these museum experiences in particular, in an attempt to trace non-linear narratives connected to the Palestinian question and Palestinian society, by shedding light on the museum as a multi-layered archive that enacts Palestine’s varied history and constantly changing geography.