Holy Land Mosaics – A bridge of tesserae across the Mediterranean

Giacomo Pizzi23 May 2011

Mosaicist workingMosaic Centre Jericho launches the Exhibition of copies of Ancient Palestinian Mosaic Masterpieces at Al Quds University in Abu Dis

Following the success of the exhibition of copies of the Dome of the Rock mosaics, which has been on display in the Palestinian Territories and Jordan during 2009 an 2010, the Mosaic Centre Jericho – Committee for the Promotion of Tourism in the Governorate of Jericho, will open the exhibition “Holy Land Mosaics – A bridge of tesserae across the Mediterranean” on May 24th at  9 am in the Headquarter of the Al Quds University in Abu Dis. The opening of the exhibition will be followed in the same day by a conference that will gather Palestinian and International scholars to debate on present condition and future challenges of Palestinian mosaic heritage.

The exhibition presents examples among the most beautiful Palestinian mosaics, coming from different locations and historical periods. The copies illustrate the value of the Palestinian mosaic heritage, evidence of the rich and diverse historical, cultural and religious elements that coexisted in the past in the territory, the need for its conservation and the cultural and social opportunities of its enhancement. The variety of locations (mosaics from churches, mosques, palaces, villas, etc) and historical periods give the opportunity to discover and illustrate the rich history of the territory.

The mosaic production in the Palestinian Territories not only testify the strong relations between the peoples that lives in the Mediterranean region, who shares the mosaic art as one of the oldest art forms; it shows that mosaic art is an enduring production, alive with innovation today as it was millennia ago.

The exhibition is possible thanks to a € 50,000 grant by the European Union, which was awarded as part of the EU’s annual cultural activities programme.

Eight mosaic artists – two European and six Palestinian – joined to reproduce examples of some of the best art masterpieces ever realised in mosaics, following the ancient techniques and materials. Thanks to their work Palestinian mosaic heritage can be enjoy in all its splendour.

The exhibition will be on display in Jerusalem Abu Dis from May 24th until June 4th then will move in Hebron and finally in Europe.

For a number of years the Mosaic Centre Jericho, with the support of the Associazione di Terra Santa (ATS),  has been trying to revive mosaic art, which was so important and relevant in ancient times in the Palestinian Territories, and to provide skilled staff with the training they need in order to be able to carry out in a professional way the preservation and enhancement of this huge heritage. To preserve the cultural heritage of Palestine is not only an opportunity for cultural exchange and dialogue, it is a must for the benefit of the future generations of all humanity. It also represents one of the best opportunities for sustainable development through sustainable tourism for the region.

For further information please contact:

Arch. Osama Hamdan, Mosaic Centre Jericho Director, 0522 500055 afuno@alqudsnet.com

Mosaic Centre Jericho 02 2326342 mosaiccentre@yahoo.com