A few weeks ago I visited the Gaza on Gaza Exhibition in London’s P21 Gallery. You may have heard about the exhibition, which gained some media attention as the centre piece of the show was smuggled from Gaza to London by Channel 4 journalist Jon Snow. The artist Majdal Nateel, who lives under the strict blockade of Gaza was unable to attend her own show, but what she has created is something simple, profound and deeply affecting. Her collection, If I Wasn’t There features coloured sketches representing the lives of the lost dreams of just some of the 527 children who died in the 2014 siege of Gaza. and it is heartbreaking. Sketched on the back of old cement bag pieces that are sent in order to rebuild homes after the devastation, the poignant reality that for these children life can never be rebuilt is especially tragic. The exhibition also featured sketches by Palestinian teenagers as part of a remediative project.
These were exceptionally sad, giving a rare insight into the enduring pain and damage that war relinquishes on children and prompted my eight year old daughter to leave this response in the comment book.