Cry, the beloved country


Exhibition Dates: 24th September – 17th October 2020



Artist: Gil Mualem-Doron


The project ‘Cry, the Beloved Country’ acts as an indictment against his homeland, which violated the holy oath of providing equal rights to its citizens without discrimination based on religion, ethnicity or gender. The exhibition reveals the various artistic tactics Gil Mualem Doron uses to confront the beloved homeland whose values have been impoverished. Frantically, looking for the right forms and strategies that may alter that state of things, or at least to sound an alarm, he uses historical research, news clipping, interviews, collaborations and participatory projects and creates,  through photography, film, installations and interventions, a journey into “the heart of darkness”. And there is no light at the end of this tunnel and nobody to hold the visitors’ hand. Transgressing the boundaries of the place from which he came, as well as the boundaries of the established art domain, he attempts to de-colonize both spaces.

The title of the exhibition, as well, transgresses time and space – making links between various systems of oppression. “Cry, the beloved country” is taken from an article published in the most read Israeli newspaper, Maariv, in 1953, by its chief editor Dr Ezriel Karlebach. Dr. Karlebach, who condemns in the article the treatment of the new Israeli state of its Arab citizens, borrowed the title from the novel by South African author Alan Patton. The book, published in 1948, considered to be one of the most important works written against racism and discrimination, can be seen as a social indictment against the society out of which the apartheid regime was growing.

Dr. Gil Mualem-Doron (1970) is an Arab-Jewish artist, born and based in the UK. Mualem-Doron’s work is research-based,  often collaborative and focuses on issues such as identity politics, nationalism, placemaking and histories of place, social justice, and transcultural aesthetics. His work has been exhibited in places such as the Turner Contemporary, Tate Modern, the South Bank Centre, People’s History Museum (Manchester), the Jewish Museum (London), and Haifa Museum of Art. His work is in several private collections and he has won commissions from organisations such as  Counterpoints Arts, Brighton Pride, the Mayoralty of London and Ben & Jerry’s. The exhibition’s text is written by the curator Galit Eilat, director of Meduza Foundation  (Netherlands) and co-curator of the  31st São Paulo Biennial. For the first time, for this exhibition, Dr Ezriel Karleback's article was translated into English by Ami Asher.

The exhibition at P21, originally planned for April 2020 was postponed due to the Covid19 crisis and will be open on the 24th September 2020. 
Some of the exhibition works including films, photography and some of the installation can be viewed on the exhibition website: https://www.crythebelovedcountry.com

The exhibition is supported by the Art Council England and HUB Collective.