A ceramics course for Palestinian youth: from archaeological heritage to local development

Giacomo Pizzi24 April 2015

At the center of Palestine, a few kilometers from the town of Sabastiya, stands the village of Nursf Jebeil: nearly 300 inhabitants, with a predominantly agricultural economy, the village has a historic relationship with the town of Sabastiya and with the Christian tradition linked to John the Baptist, and is the site of a small convent of Orthodox nuns.

Several weeks ago a ceramics course began, organized by the Mosaic Centre of Jericho in collaboration with Association pro Terra Sancta, thanks to financing provided by the Fondation Assistance Internationale of Lugano (FAI), as part of a larger project for restoring local traditions and development with a particular focus on youth. The course will last three months and involves the participation of five local youths, two girls and three boys, with the support of a Palestinian master ceramist from Ramallah.

Italian ceramic art will be present in the project: an Italian volunteer ceramic expert will conduct two workshops lasting a week each, one in April and the other in May, to teach special techniques to the youths.

The funds made available by the FAI have also made possible the purchase of a pottery kiln and all of the necessary related equipment, which will remain available to the youths so that they can continue their work and thus give continuity to the activity.

The ultimate goal of the course is to create a group of ceramic artists who will have the ability to produce and market reproductions of local archaeological discoveries: progressing from history and tradition to the cultural and social development of the region.

To learn more about the Association pro Terra Sancta project “Sabastiya, between past and present”, click here.