Exhibitions | ZeftLand

ZeftLand

 

In the beginning of the First Intifada, in the years between 1988 and 1990, the occupying Israeli army enforced a curfew on the city that lasted more than 20 days. I was 10 years old then. We heard nothing during those days of imprisonment except for the loud rumbling of army vehicles. A repulsive smell seeped into our houses and we didn’t even have the right to look through the windows to see what was happening outside.

On the morning of the day that the curfew was lifted, I went out with my father, holding his hand, to see that everything over three meters high had been spray painted black, including all the walls and shop doors. Even the bottom third of the palm tree, which stood at the heart of our neighborhood, was black… So I asked my father, what is all this? He answered, zefttar—and I asked him why? He said, …in order to cover the graffiti on the walls and to prevent anyone from writing again, which they consider incitement. I was silent for a bit, my father was too, while that horrific scene captured our eyes. After a moment I asked my father, I wonder, have they sprayed the sea too? My father looked at me, smiling, and said possibly! And then stared at the palm tree again.

The word zeft is used in Palestine specifically, and the Arab region in general, as a contemptuous term expressing a wide range of emotions—from a discouraged state of mind to one of repulsion, and sometimes it points to bad luck or a way to describe an awful situation. This suited the concept of my series Standby (2008), which expressed the condition of the Palestinian people, who seemed to be dissolving in their waiting, as the 60th anniversary of the Nakba passed.

The first time I started using zeft as a raw material in my work was in Standby. I started making it out of a passion for discovering new materials, sometimes mixing it with henna and dyes, and to explore the meaning of the word zeft. I can confess, the material defeated me. After Standby I felt I had no control of it, and further to that, it controlled the other materials with its singular color, its consistency and shape. But I continued using it in limited quantities, as the color black, attempting to control it through continuous research and the addition of other mediums.

Later when I was working on Low Quality Love (2015) I overused zeft, and I achieved new, exciting technical results. This enticed me to go back and obsessively interact with the material again, except this time the research led me in another direction, to understand it in its chemical form. I worked with a chemist friend of mine in a university lab in France to analyze all my tests since 2008 and we discovered the mistakes I had made in controlling the temperature and timing the mixing and application of it on the canvas. This helped me to achieve forms outside the laws of coincidence that had been governing me.

 

Zeft (2016-2017)

 

From that point on I set forth extensively researching and interacting with the material once again in Zeft (2016-2017), approaching the human form, and particularly the face, as I had in Standby. For the first time I worked at a smaller scale to better control the forms and got rid of traditional tools for painting, replacing them with iron, wood and plastic, using different gestures. I controlled the temperature, cutting and working with the material at specific time intervals to create the layers. Never before had I reused the zeft that had dripped onto the studio floor, but after it dried I scraped it up and applied it, in new layers. From there I got the idea for my next series.

 

ZeftLand (2018-2019)

 

Everything in this material embodies zeft. How could I forget the sea of Gaza, which practically turned black, and the skies over our cities which grew dimmer day by day. How am I supposed to get rid of the zeft in which I have lived, if I have not tried to delve into it?

I was obsessed with the material while also feeling discontented with it, like someone who has fallen into a tar pit, without escape. This led to further research into its visual aesthetics. Now able to control it, I could express myself in a way I was unable to in the past. I was compelled towards abstraction again—the material was powerful enough. The Sea of Memories (2017) was the true beginning of ZeftLand when I shifted from the human to the earth, from the face to the landscape.

In ZeftLand I wanted to discover how to transform the character of the sacred space to that of zeft. I minimized the distance between the subject and the concept to focus on the continuous destruction of this land. And it was the land that pointed me towards using a living material, like tree branches, twigs, and dry flower petals.

These works are thus conceptual approaches to the scale of destruction, fire, and pain. I have been confronted by the sacred and the cursed, both on earth and in the work of art. I have found myself asking—is there any difference?

Hani Zurob

Feb, 2019 Paris

Dia Al-Azzawi | Silk Road No 3 | 2008 | Acrylic | Silk Screen | 160x300 cm | 4-DA1-2008
Dia Al-Azzawi | Silk Road No 2 | 2007 | Acrylic | Silk Screen | 160x200 cm | 2-DA1-2007
Dia Al-Azzawi | Silk Road#1 | 2006 | Acrylic | Silk Screen | 170x200 cm | 1-DA1-2006
Dia Al-Azzawi | Silk Road No 4 | 2008 | Acrylic | Silk Screen | 160x160 cm | 3-DA1-2008
Hanaa Malallah | Chrysalis | Details | 2014 | Mixed Media & Butterfly | Paper | 110x110 cm | 233-HM12-2014
Hanaa Malallah | Chrysalis | 2014 | Mixed Media & Butterfly | Paper | 110x110 cm | 232-HM12-2014
Hanaa Malallah | Peace Trade 1 | 2014 | Digital print & Ink drawing | Paper | 100x100 cm | 231-HM12-2014
Hanaa Malallah | In The Name of Peace | 2013 | Drawing & Digital print | Paper | 40x30 cm | 230-HM12-2013
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #01 | 2017 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 100x120 cm | 227-HZ11-2017
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #02 (diptych) | 2018 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 100x240 cm | 226-HZ11-2018
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #03 (diptych) | 2018 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 100x240 cm | 225-HZ11-2018
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #04 | 2018 | Tar, Pigments & Mixed Media | Canvas | 115x200 cm | 224-HZ11-2018
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #05 | 2018 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 115x200 cm | 223-HZ11-2018
Dia Al-Azzawi | Design Object (Furniture) | 2018 | Polyester Resin | 17x32x9 cm | ED.1 of 5 | 220-DA1-2018
Dia Al-Azzawi | Design Object (Furniture) | 2018 | Polyester Resin | 20x25.5x7.5 cm | ED.1 of 5 | 219-DA1-2018
Dia Al-Azzawi | Design Object (Furniture) | 2018 | Polyester Resin | 17x32x9 cm | ED.1 of 5 | 218-DA1-2018
Nazar Yahya | Knight on Sawhorse | 2018 | Acrylic | Canvas | 198x198 cm | 209-NY6-2018
Nazar Yahya | Birds | 2018 | Acrylic | Canvas | 163x90 cm | 207-NY6-2018
Nazar Yahya | Inheritance | 2018 | Acrylic | Canvas | 163x90 cm | 206-NY6-2018
Nazar Yahya | Inheritance | 2016 | Bronze | 84x73x22 cm | ED.2/3 | 205-NY6-2016
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2010 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 204-AD10-2010
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2012 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 203-AD10-2012
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2012 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 202-AD10-2012
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2012 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 201-AD10-2012
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2012 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 200-AD10-2012
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2013 | Water Colour | Paper | 15x11 cm | 199-AD10-2013
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2013 | Water Colour | Paper | 15x11 cm | 198-AD10-2013
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2013 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 197-AD10-2013
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2013 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 196-AD10-2013
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2013 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 195-AD10-2013
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2014 | Water Colour | Paper | 17x14 cm | 194-AD10-2014
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2014 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 193-AD10-2014
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2014 | Water Colour | Paper | 18x13 cm | 192-AD10-2014
Amar Dawod | Untitled | 2016 | Water Colour | Paper | 17x14 cm | 191-AD10-2016
Sinan Hussein | Agreeing & Disagreeing | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 130x130 cm | 183-SH4-2016
Dia Al-Azzawi | Handallah | 2011 | Bronze | 29x17x10 cm | ED.4/9 | 182-DA1-2011
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2013 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 140x120 cm | 180-BH3-2013
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 175-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 174-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 173-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 171-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 170-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 169-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 168-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 167-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 166-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 165-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 162-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 161-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 160-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 159-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 158-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 70x50 cm | 130-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 129-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 128-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 126-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 125-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 120-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 42x30 cm | 118-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 42x29 cm | 117-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 42x29 cm | 115-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 113-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 112-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 111-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 110-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 109-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Ink | Paper | 30x21 cm | 108-NC8-2018
Naji Chalhoub | Untitled | 2018 | Acrylic and ink | Paper | 45x33 cm | 107-NC8-2018
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2009 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 17-WD2-2009
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 150x200 cm | 41-WM5-2016
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 155x200 cm | 21-WM5-2014
Untitled wala Dakak
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2010 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 18-WD2-2010
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2015 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 16-WD2-2015
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 155x200 cm | 42-WM5-2014
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 100x100 cm | 51-WM5-2014
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2010 | Acrylic | Canvas | 150x150 cm | 38-WD2-2010
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 150x200 cm | 45-WM5-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2010 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 39-WD2-2010
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 155x200 cm | 23-WM5-2014
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2010 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 19-WD2-2010
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 155x200 cm | 22-WM5-2014
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 170x140 cm | 20-WM5-2014
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 81x100 cm | 44-WM5-2016
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2005 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 130x97 cm | 43-WM5-2005
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 106-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 50x65 cm | 105-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 50x65 cm | 104-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 46x61 cm | 103-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 102-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 101-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 100-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 99-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 98-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 97-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 30x40 cm | 96-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 24x32 cm | 95-WD2-2016
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2016 | Charcoal and Ink | Paper | 24x32 cm | 94-WD2-2016
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 200x170 cm | 90-BH3-2016
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #5 (details) | 2018 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 115x200 cm | 228-HZ11-2018
Walaa Dakak | Untitled | 2010 | Acrylic | Canvas | 170x130 cm | 40-WD2-2010
Nazar Yahya | Revealing | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 188x111.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 87-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Hiding | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 188x111.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 86-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Seat 2 (The Head) | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 164x111.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 85-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Seat 1 (The Arms) | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 164x111.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 84-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Seat 3 (Ecstasy) | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 164x111.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 83-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | The Dilemma | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 111.5x95 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 82-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | He Is The Truth | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 111.5x92.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 81-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Ascension | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 115.5x183 cm | 80-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Incarnation And Union | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 61.5x137.5 cm | 79-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Magic Cane | 2013 | Giclee Print | Photo paper | 61.5x127.5 cm | ED.1 / 3 | 78-NY6-2013
Sinan Hussein | Fishing For Kindness | 2015 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x190 cm | 73-SH4-2015
Dia Al-Azzawi | Desert Rose #4 | 2013 | Polyester Resin | 40x34x35 cm | 71-DA1-2013
Dia Al-Azzawi | Mural For Silent Music | 2014 | Polyester Resin | 200x300 cm | ED.1/3 | 69-DA1-2014
Dia Al-Azzawi | Imaginary Temple | 2017 | Stainless Steel | 60x45x20 cm | 68-DA1-2017
Dia Al-Azzawi | Golden Altar | 2017 | Polyester Resin | Canvas | 44x35x19 cm | 67-DA1-2017
Dia Al-Azzawi | Desert Rose #7 | 2013 | Polyester Resin | 78x53x35 cm | 66-DA1-2013
Dia Al-Azzawi | Desert Rose #1 | 2013 | Polyester Resin | 80x48x40 cm | 65-DA1-2013
Dia Al-Azzawi | Colorful Bird #2 | 2017 | Polyester Resin | 60x42x12 cm | 64-DA1-2017
Dia Al-Azzawi | Butterfly | 2017 | Polyester Resin | 44x35x19 cm | 63-DA1-2017
Sinan Hussein | Selfie II | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x120 cm | 62-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | Right Path 3 | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 150x120 cm | 61-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | In Agreement | 2016 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 130x130 cm | 59-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2015 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 150x105 cm | 57-SH4-2015
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2015 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 140x135 cm | 56-SH4-2015
Sinan Hussein | Waiting II | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x290 cm | 55-SH4-2014
Sinan Hussein | Waiting | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x190 cm | 54-SH4-2014
Sinan Hussein | Icon | 2013 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 50x50 cm | 53-SH4-2013
Sinan Hussein | Icon 2 | 2013 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 50x50 cm | 52-SH4-2013
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 150x200 cm | 50-WM5-2014
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Paper | 50x65 cm | 49-WM5-2016
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Paper | 32.5x50 cm | 48-WM5-2016
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Paper | 32.5x25 cm | 47-WM5-2016
Walid El Masri | Untitled | 2016 | Mixed Media | Paper | 50x65 cm | 46-WM5-2016
Nazar Yahya | Plant 1-2 | 2013 | Giclee Print | Paper | 61.5x121.5 cm | 37-NY6-2013
Nazar Yahya | Allah | 2013 | Giclee Print | Paper | 61.5x116.5 cm | 36-NY6-2013
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 70x50 cm | 35-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 70x50 cm | 34-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 70x50 cm | 33-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 70x50 cm | 32-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 65x50 cm | 31-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 65x50 cm | 30-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 65x50 cm | 29-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Untitled | 2017 | Mixed Media | Paper | 65x50 cm | 28-BH3-2017
Bahram Hajou | Human Beings | 2017 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 160x250 cm | 26-BH3-2017
Sinan Hussein | Tourists | 2009 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 60x60 cm | 15-SH4-2009
Sinan Hussein | Living In Time | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 65x65 cm | 14-SH4-2014
Sinan Hussein | Selfi I | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x210 cm | 13-SH4-2014
Sinan Hussein | Isolation Legitmacy | 2014 | Mixed Media | Canvas | 180x210 cm | 12-SH4-2014
Dia Al-Azzawi | Handallah: Good Morning Beirut | 2016 | Polyester Resin | 47x49x35 cm | 8-DA1-2016
Dia Al-Azzawi | Desert Rose No.3 | 2013 | Polyester Resin | 29x36x27 cm | 6-DA1-2013
Dia Al-Azzawi | Colorful Bird No.1 | 2017 | Polyester Resin | 58x30x21 cm | 5-DA1-2017
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #06 | 2019 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 65x150 cm | 222-HZ11-2019
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #6 (details) | 2019 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 65x150 cm | 229-HZ11-2019
Sinan Hussein | Portait 2 | 2016 | Acrylic | Paper | 30x30 cm | 184-SH4-2016
Hani Zurob | ZeftLand #07 | 2019 | Tar, Tree branches & Mixed Media | Canvas | 24x18 cm | 221-HZ11-2019
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2016 | Ink | Paper | 38x28 cm | 189-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2016 | Ink | Paper | 38x28 cm | 187-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2016 | Ink | Paper | 28x38 cm | 186-SH4-2016
Sinan Hussein | Untitled | 2016 | Ink | Paper | 38x28 cm | 188-SH4-2016