boycott targets Tate exhibit
9 August 2002
A TATE Britain exhibition by an avant-garde Tel Aviv-born artist
is the latest target of campaigners for a boycott of Israeli goods
The London branch of the Pales-tine Solidarity Campaign is urging
supporters to demonstrate against or send written protests about
the show, by photographer and video artist Ori Gersht, 34.
Running until August 26, the Afterglow exhibition features
photographic and video images of disputed territory in Israel
and of Arab towns and villages. The artist who holds dual
British and Israeli nationality said the boycott attempt
reflected ignorance of the lowest kind.
Speaking from Israel, he told the JC that his portrayal of the
countrys ancient landscape demonstrated the absurdity
of conflict. Im interested in the poetical resonance of this
The boycott only shows tyranny and disrespect for freedom
of speech and inspiration. What Im doing is so much more philosophical,
A Tate Britain spokesman said that it was not the policy
of the gallery to discriminate against artists on the grounds of
race, nationality or religion. Any protest letters would be
dealt with on an individual basis.
Meanwhile, top academics are due to meet at the Board of Deputies
London offices next Wednesday to formulate a strong and unified
response to the boycott of Israeli universities and academics.
The initiative is in response to the sacking of two Israeli academics
from the editorial boards of two privately owned journals of translation
studies. The journals are edited by Mona Baker, a professor of translation
studies at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and
Board director-general Neville Nagler said that a unified
response from those within the academic world was desperately
He added that some academics were already taking individual action.
One is Norman Fenton, professor of computer science at Queen Mary
College, University of London, who is refusing to attend, or give
seminars at UMIST, or at the Open University, the teaching base
of Professor Steven Rose, who is leading the academic boycott against
of Israel - Includes information on upcoming cultural
events featuring israeli participation - target details with
sample letters, etc.