AMQF celebrates the release of Hehayak “Knitting”, Issue 12 of 28 Magazine
On Thursday, 25 October 2018, the Public Programme (PP) of the A. M. Qattan Foundation (AMQF) celebrated the release of Heyaka “Knitting”, Issue 12 of the Gaza-based 28 online magazine. Edited by Mahmoud al-Shaer, this issue is a culmination of the of the “Knitting” project, curated by Adania Shibli. “Knitting” is the first edition of the Creative Net programme, a project of the PP.
Heyaka featured a series of encounters, conversations, tours, and art exhibitions which were organised over a period of one week, 18-24 October 2017. These events brought together actors/participants from diverse backgrounds and geographies from Palestine and abroad working in culture, art and other sectors, such as agriculture and environment. They went on a tour around different locations in Palestine.
Participants included Atreyee Gupta, Bernd Scherer, Rana Barakat, Rema Hammami, Gigi Argyropoulou, Philip Rizk, Lina Marwani, Yazan Khalili, Yana Mar, Majd Kayyal, and Mohamed Elias.
Collectives also participated in the project, including Al-Ata’ Society for Kafr Malik Women and The Apiary of Kafr Malik; Tishreen Association, Taybeh; Old City Youth Association – Jerusalem, Asfar Cultural Initiative – Nablus; 28 Magazine – Gaza; Hakoritna Farm – Tulkarem; Khashabi Theatre – Haifa; Martyr Basil al-Araj Library – Al-Maghazi refugee camp, Gaza; Pulse Youth Forum (Multaqa Nabd al-Shababi) – Ramallah; and Palestine Caving Club – Hebron.
In the editorial of Heyaka issue, Adania Shibli explained that participants attempted to reflect on actions and movements, which challenged restrictions placed on the Palestinian existence through colonial violence and means of oppression. These restrictions have caused despair and illusion of “inability” among the oppressed and the persecuted.
Participants re-engaged with the Palestinian geography, including Palestinian political, social, cultural and economic landscapes. To this avail, they introduced insights and propositions, which explored alternative forms of human concepts that are critical for many today.
The name Heyaka “Knitting” derives from the very essence of the project. As Adania put it: “It attempts to weave a web among these collectives. It is prompted by the willingness to create inspiring links between life initiatives, which we come across in Palestine today, and others of similar approaches in other geographies around the world, such as Chile, Senegal, India, Germany, and Greece… as an example.”
In the launching event, a conversation took place between several participants in the project. Of these, Munir Fasheh asserted that the project took him back to the 1970s when youth volunteerism in Palestine was at its height. Hierarchy and budgets were irrelevant. In the early 1980s, the Higher Committee for Voluntary Action was established and Palestinian factions took on different voluntary roles.
Historian Rana Barakat read out part of her “Unravelling Stillness of the Silence: A Journey into Caves towards a Text with Intense Character”, a text she contributed to Heyaka. Political activist and released prisoner Mohamed Elias read out part of his contribution “A Palestinian Lesson on Heyaka”, reflecting on the experience of Palestinians in custody.
Ibrahim Masri, a cofounder of Asfar Cultural Initiative, talked about Asfar’s activity in the project. This included screening and discussion of Out in the Street, a film codirected by Jasmina Metwaly and Philip Rizk. Asfar also presented a reading of Zygmunt Bauman’s Liquid Modernity, addressing the concept of revolutionary daily work and its change overtime.
Zeina Zarour from the Nabd Youth Forum said: “After the project, I realised that I had been in need of something different. This project gave me the chance to be introduced to many active collectives.”
To read texts contributed by participants, see the online version of Issue 12 –
Heyaka here (in Arabic): http://www.28mag.ps/