The military occupation, the civilian occupation of Palestinian territories and the uprooting of Arab civilians in Israel are aspects of the de-Arabization and Jewisation of the territory ranging from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean. The film The First 54 Years, by Avi Mograbi, and the exhibition Ground Truth. Destruction and Return in Al-Araqib, presented by Forensic Architecture at TNDMII and about the uprooting and dispossession of an Israeli Bedouin community, represent an opportunity to discuss these processes and the forms of resistance, activism and artistic expression they raise.
Filmmaker and artist born in 1956, he studied philosophy at the Tel Aviv University and art at the Ramat Hasharon Art School. His non-fiction films have been provocatively and self-reflexively examining the Israel-Palestinian conflict, investigating and criticising the paradoxes of Israeli society, which celebrates age old myths and tales of destruction and violence while condemning Palestinians for resorting to similar acts of violence.
Aziz was a farmer who produced vegetables and dairy products in the Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in the Negev Desert (Israel) until 2010, when the Israeli authorities completely destroyed the village and the community’s livelihood. The community has reaffirmed its right to their ancestral land, which is thoroughly substantiated by legal documents, a cemetery and architectural and agricultural facilities. Aziz is entirely devoted to Al-Araqib’s struggle.