Return of the Soul is a remarkable artwork - a sculpture of 3,000 wax figures - marking the artist's journey, which began in a former Nazi concentration camp in Poland, and via many UNRWA refugees camps, led eventually to the pulverised ruins of the Nahr al-Bared Palestinian refugee camp also run by UNRWA in Lebanon.
Scottish artist Jane Frere lived and worked with Palestinian refugees to 'capture emotions', as she prepared her installation, incorporating written and oral testimonies from victims of the mass exodus of 1948, known as the Nakbah, or the catastrophe of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. In a co-production with the Palestinian Art Court - Al Hoash, she involved hundreds of Palestinians in workshops producing the wax figures which form part of the installation; the project was achieved through close collaboration with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the dedicated UN agency established to provide 'temporary' support to homeless Palestinian refugees 60 years ago.
The Nakbah Project continues as the Nakbah continues. Planning for the installation of Return of the Soul continues particularly in the hope of bringing a wider and better understanding of the context of ongoing crisis for Palestinians in Gaza and indeed in the West Bank, as well as UNRWA camps in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and elsewhere. Curators interested in more information please contact Jane Frere and the Nakbah Project via: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2008 May-June: Al Hoash Gallery, East Jerusalem
July-August: Patriothall Gallery, Edinburgh
September-October: Shams Theatre, Beirut, Lebanon
October-January 22 2009: Darat al Funun, Amman, Jordan
"....this admirable exhibition sheds light on a little known terrorisation programme that must not be repeated." - Paul Dale, The List review ****
'One of the most controversial shows' ....at the Edinburgh Art Festival." - Mike Wade, The Times
Download "The Roots Remain", Jane Frere's reflections on The Nakbah Project in This Week in Palestine May 2012
Jane Frere's latest work - a large triptych called What is the colour of occupation? can be seen in a group show, entitled Passport to Palestine, at La Scatola Gallery in London from November 22-December 3. See www.janefrere.info.
In the Shadow of the Wall, a major series of works on canvas and pastels was exhibited at the Lang Byre Gallery, Aberdeenshire in November 2010.
Jane Frere designed the set for the play co-authored by Justin Butcher and Palestian Ahmed Masoud - Go to Gaza, Drink the Sea, The production was performed at the Assembly Hall in Edinburgh following its London debut at Theatro Technis.