The images you find in this issue are in stark contrast to those that currently fill the news. And indeed, many of the photographers included here have expressed their desire to display and document the side of Palestine that makes life bearable at times and enjoyable at others. Their contributions showcase this beautiful little place on Earth that fascinates people around the world, and offer you a glimpse of the lives of its people. This issue presents only a fraction of the creative output of Palestinian photographers who include world-class artists, expert professionals, and highly accomplished amateurs. We wanted the images to speak, and have included merely short explanations and artists’ statements of inspiration or intent. The biographies are presented separately and have been radically shortened due to space limitations; but at least they offer some insight into the achievements of these photographers – the artistic ambassadors of Palestine – who contributed to this issue. Our sincere thanks go to those who enriched our issue with their contributions, and apologies go to the many others whom we were not able to reach.
Photography in Palestine has a rich history. Among the early pioneers were Esayee Garabedian, who introduced the technique in the 1860s in Jerusalem, Garabed Krikorian, who opened a photo workshop on Yaffa Road in the 1870s, and Khalil Raad, our Personality of the Month – to name just a few. Thanks go to Hanny Khoury for an article on Karimeh Abboud, the first woman photographer in Palestine. Mona Halaby gives a beautiful introduction to historical family photography in Jerusalem, much of it the work of amateurs. Our Book of the Month is titled Balcony Over Jerusalem: A Middle East Memoir; and our Exhibition of the Month presents works by Jack Persekian.
TWiP is proud to have entered its twentieth year of continuously fulfilling its self-imposed mission of presenting Palestine – bringing out the best of Palestine – and is grateful for all new and old subscribers who contribute to our sustainability. (If you are looking for a unique gift idea for a loved one, look no further!).
Orthodox and Armenian Christians in Palestine celebrate Christmas on January 7 and 18, respectively. On behalf of the entire team at TWiP, I wish a Merry Christmas to all who are celebrating and hope that all of you have entered the New Year with renewed energy, hope, and enthusiasm despite all the odds – or because of them!