The recent completion of the spraying of an essay by Farid Esack, professor and anti-apartheid activist, onto the West Bank barrier is a strong example of the power of visual art to become a tool of resistance. Of course, this isn’t the first wall to be turned into a canvas, the Berlin Wall being just one example. In Palestine, local taggers Faris Arouri, Yousef Nijim, and Raji Najamare are funded through the Dutch organization Send a Message and for €30 they will spray a work of your choice onto the wall. Esack’s essay is their largest feat yet. At 1,998 words long, the piece consumed 500 cans of spray paint and 300 cans of white paint. Yet it occupied a mere mile of the 463 mile-long barrier. Esack writes:
Arriving in your land, the land of Palestine, the sense of deja vu is inescapable. I am struck by the similarities. In some ways, all of us are the children of our histories. Yet, we may also choose to be struck by the stories of others. Perhaps this ability is what is called morality. We cannot always act upon what we see but we always have the freedom to see and to be moved.