Palestinian Hazem Harb Brings his Heritage Alive Through Art

Jyoti Kalsi, Special to Weekend Review, Gulf News, April 22, 2020

‘Contemporary Heritage’ explores the notion of heritage as unfixed and fluid.

Palestinian artist Hazem Harb is an avid collector of memorabilia such as photographs, coins, letters and maps of Palestine dating back to the years before and during British rule (1914-1948) and before the Naqba or exodus of his people from their land.


The artist — who was born in Gaza in 1980 and now lives in Dubai and Rome — uses these fragments of the past in his work to bring collective memories of Palestinian history, culture and identity into the present and to challenge their political exclusion from contemporary narratives.



Harb’s multimedia artworks take viewers beyond the maps, social constructs and political struggles of today to show the rich culture and natural beauty of Palestine, and to reclaim and reaffirm Palestinian heritage and identity.

His solo exhibition at Tabari Artspace, titled Contemporary Heritage, explores the notion of heritage as unfixed and fluid by presenting his own heritage in a contemporary context. The United Nations marked its annual World Heritage Day last week, but this show is a reminder that some communities are fighting to preserve their forgotten heritage. Also, while most of the world is learning to live in quarantine, Harb’s work reminds us that some people have been living under severe restrictions for generations...