One at You
One at You
An Eye for an Eye, 2019
archival inkjet print
dimensions variable

As part of a vernacular ethnography, I chose to highlight the evil eye. Commonplace in Palestinian culture, the nazar is displayed in order to fend off any foul intentions from immoral forces. In place of the resources necessary to defend themselves, Palestinians must resist bombs and shells with evil eye amulets. The relationship between this charm and the Palestinian body is one of personal protection, but is this relationship valid? I manipulated parts of the body in order to bypass the limitations of nature. Take the finger: the elongation is akin to Pinocchio’s nose––growing when he is lying. Similarly, the powers of the evil eye may be inflated and untrue; however, it is better to be safe than sorry.

Peace of Mind

In the Eye for an Eye series, the subject’s body parts were manipulated to serve as comments in a conversation about the legitimacy of the evil eye and Palestinians’ usage of the evil eye amulet as a defense against this supernatural power typically attributed to Israel’s mistreatment of Palestinians. In this image, the absence of the subject’s head seeks to operate as a symbol for their disregard of the disconcerting thoughts that typically fill the Palestinian mind. With Peace of Mind, the subject dons an evil eye, imagining an effective remedy for the ailments of their circumstances, clearing their conscience.

It is Divine
It is Divine

It is Divine depicts the holiness of the nazar (evil eye amulet), used as a defense mechanism in Palestinian culture against the supernatural power of the evil eye. For Palestinians, it is one of their only options for security and resistance against oppressive powers. It is for that reason that so much emphasis is placed on keeping it in all spaces, such as homes, businesses, and taxis.

These works were exhibited at the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation.