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October 11, 2013 / thatsarahdean

We Stitch Angry

a checkpoint CLOSE

A nine metre high, concrete wall surrounds Bethlehem. If Jesus was born today, he would grow up playing in streets overlooked by watchtowers like this one. Israeli soldiers with guns watching his every move.

Local people are no longer free to travel. Water is withheld. Home are demolished without warning for being in the wrong place. This madness isn’t going to result in peace for Israel and Palestine.

The way people living in Palestine are being treated makes a lot of people cross, if you’re a crafter it makes you cross-stitch.power to WIDE

blessed are CLOSE

We Stitch Angry is a craftivist project I created as part of my work for the human rights organisation, Amos Trust.  For over 20 years Amos has partnered Christian, Jewish and Muslim peace groups in Palestine and Israel.  Amos endeavours to support their work, stand with them against injustice, and tell their stories, using art and creative campaigning.

I invited crafters to join me creating protest cross stitch samplers, supplying them with a slogan and a deadline. I then took the completed 15 cross-stitch pieces, created by 14 British women with me to the Holy Land.  We then photographed the samplers in appropriate settings across Palestine and Israel e.g. Home Sweet Home outside a demolished home; Power to (some) of the people overlooking an illegal settlement housing estate, and so on.

The resulting exhibition was launched at the Greenbelt Festival in 2012.  “This understated exhibition felt to me to have the perfect measure of tongue-in-cheek humour and political starkness, and left me smiling as well as thinking. ” Click here to read this review in full.

It was then part of the ADVENTurous exhibition at Leftbank Leeds.

ladylookingbigger(Click here to see more lovely photos of the work in situe).

It has since been hosted in Kingston-on-Thames and Cheltenham, and continues to tour the UK.

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