Palingenesis – Resilient Regeneration and Rebirth
Palingenesia is a theory of rebirth or recreation used in various contexts in philosophy, theology, politics and biology. I chose to use this concept in my art to illustrate the condition of surpassed hope that I witnessed during two visits to Palestine. The stratified conditions of living, due to the occupation of Israel on Palestinian land, has created an injustice and an elusive hope for peace and sustainability in the region.
The 194 pairs of shoes in this piece represent the people of the land, in all its diversity. The number 194 reflects the non-binding, ineffective 1948 UN Resolution 194 stating, “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date…” The olive tree seedlings in each shoe embodies hope in its genesis state. Cultivating an olive tree seed takes much time, devotion and persistence, as does the rebirth or re-creation of a nation. The olive tree is sacred to the inhabitants of Palestine. It is a hardy resistant plant with a robust root system capable of regenerating itself even when destroyed. The olive branch is a symbol of peace, power, fertility and purity.
The viewing public is invited to take one of the packaged seedlings to nurture in their homes as a sign of compassion and support towards justice for Palestinians in their homeland. In exchange, please leave a brief statement of your thoughts and/or prayers on this matter.