The University of Cape Town and the Palestinian Museum announce the release of the new book:
Landwalks: Across Palestine and South Africa

22 November 2022 - Birzeit: The Palestinian Museum has announced the book launch of Landwalks: Across Palestine and South Africa as part of an ongoing creative research collaboration between the Museum and the University of Cape Town School of Architecture. It was made possible thanks to a generous Sharjah Art Foundation 2021 FOCAL POINT Publishing Grant. The book launch will take place during the fifth edition of Focal Point, the annual art book fair showcasing independent bookmaking from the region and around the world, to be held between November 25th to 27th in Sharjah.

This book comes within the framework of a research partnership agreement signed in July 2021 by the Museum with the University of Cape Town and is the result of an ongoing two-year research project on the topography of the occupation in the West Bank that examines similarities, intersections, and peculiarities between the Palestinian experience and the experience of Apartheid South Africa. The project included a series of private and public workshops, bridging between a museographic approach to preserving, documenting, exhibiting, and chronicling violations on the ground, and a design-based approach to conceptualising and presenting the transformation of the occupation landscape. An open call inviting contributions from artists and researchers in Palestine, South Africa, and their diasporas was published in November 2021.

The 96-page book, published in Arabic and English, explores embodied ways of knowing land and reclamation of the collective landscape of the two nations by overcoming fragmentary colonial boundaries through artistic practices and research. It was co-authoredincludes contributions by: Tshepo Madlingozi, Sumayya Vally, Hala Barakat, Zara Julius, Samia Kayyali, Tareq Khalaf, Tanzeem Razak, Rasha Saffarini, Mette LouLou Von Kohl, and Nisreen Zahda. Editorial coordination was undertaken by Meghan Ho-Tong, and edits were made by Ho-Tongtogether with, Tomà Berlanda, Marah Khalifa, and Adila Laïdi-Hanieh.

Describing the book, Tomà Berlanda stated: ‘This publication is the result of a fascinating series of conversations that developed over the course of ten months. During this period, violence and oppression, particularly in Occupied Palestine, continued unabashed. The constant sound has become a difficult element to avoid. This logbook acts as an echo chamber, amplifying, diffusing, and archiving voices to make sure that they are not lost, and that there is constant hope in resistance to oppression. This volume is the first public expression of research initiated by a grant from the University of Cape Town, South Africa, in collaboration with colleagues at the Palestinian Museum in Birzeit, Palestine.’

Palestinian Museum Director General Adila Laïdi-Hanieh, PhD, underlined that the publication ‘reflects the effort put forth by both partners to produce emancipatory knowledge experiences. It does so in a global political context that suppresses freedom and erodes the rights of oppressed peoples; this context also directly contributes to raising the ceiling of expectations from cultural and academic institutions, regarding them as having the primary perspective on contemplating issues of justice and the rights of peoples in experiencing a free and creative life.’

The Palestinian Museum- Non-Governmental Association is dedicated to supporting an open and dynamic Palestinian culture nationally and internationally. The Museum presents and engages with new perspectives on Palestinian history, society, and culture. It also offers spaces for creative ventures, educational programmes, and innovative research. The foundation stone of the Palestinian Museum was laid in 2013, with the work and planning phase for programmes and projects beginning in the same year. Since opening its doors in 2016, the Museum has received several awards, including the World Architectural Festival Culture Award and the Presidential Award from the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland in 2017; the MENA Green Building Award in 2018; and the Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 2019. The Palestinian Museum has been a member of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) since 2015.

Book information:
ISBN: 978-0-6397-2935-0
Language: English and Arabic
Dimensions: 202 x 281mm Portrait
Graphic design and editorial coordination: Meghan Ho-Tong
Printed by: Dream Press, Cape Town, SA
First print run: 750 copies