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Pioneer Tree

The video installation Pioneer Tree consists of two video channels screened simultaneously. The first is a one shot portraying KKL-JNF workers, both Jews and Arabs, loading trees onto a truck in preparation for the planting season. The second video channel was shot at several locations throughout Israel during winter 2011, at the beginning of the planting period, including several guided tours organized by KKL-JNF in various forests for the public, free of charge. Pioneer Tree introduces a contextual, aesthetic, and cultural juxtaposition between the Tu B'Shvat (the Jewish New Year for Trees) tree planting and the act of cutting down trees for Christmas, two holidays celebrated around the same time of year; it contrasts national ethos and personal memory, copy and original, natural and artificial. The conversion of the "wilderness" landscapes into pine forests indeed serves as a narrative axis, but at the same time, this "new" landscape represents the passions and desires of different communities.

Two-channel video installation, 17:23 / 5:48, 2011.