Haifa Then and Now, sound installation

Rehab Nazzal

2018, 10:00 minutes, no dialogue

TAPECODE 1021.10

Haifa Then and Now consists of 200 life jackets and a 10-minute field recording from Haifa Port in colonized Palestine. Sea waves sounds emanate from several speakers installed inside the life vests spread chaotically throughout the gallery space. Haifa Then and Now explores the relation of sound to memory, it questions whether seawater can preserve the memory of refugees who escape the horror of war and colonial violence; whether the water holds the memory of their fears, tears, screams, and cries; whether it preserves the memory of human bodies drawn into it and lost. The work commemorates Haifa’s 72,000 Palestinian refugees who were forced by Zionist military groups to flee their homes during the 1947-1948 Nakba through the city’s port. Haifa Then and Now also draws a connection between ongoing refugee crises and the largest and oldest refugee problem of modern times—the Palestinian refugee catastrophe.

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