From the late Ottoman Empire, through the British Mandate to the persistent Israeli colonialism, aerial photography, filming, and cartography has offered governments knowledge and power to control land, people, and resources. Regardless of how, why, for whom, and in what form such aerial material had been produced, the gaze on the Palestinian landscape was looked upon as visual text that supported the shaping of politics, culture, economy and ideology. This special issue of the Jerusalem Quarterly, the second volume dedicated to Palestine from Above, covers new themes of landscape and aerial perspectives not addressed in JQ issue number 81.
The two issues (JQ 81 and JQ 82) are guest-edited by Yazid Anani, the Director of the Public Programme at the A.M. Qattan Foundation and former professor of architecture at Birzeit University. They are an integral component of a coming exhibition at the Qattan Foundation, which will attempt to subvert the power of writing history and documenting society and landscape by the different regimes of power through displaying works by artists alongside to historical archival material. The two issues will be merged to form the exhibition book together with a selection of textual and visual archival materials and briefs on the artworks and artists.
Both JQ 81 and JQ 82 are being printed, and will soon be available in paper form.
Cover photo: “Looking down from the Mount of Olives, cameraman Frank Hurley and writer Maslyn Williams gaze out across the Valley of Jehoshaphat onto Jerusalem,” 1940. Hurley collection of family, industrial, pastoral and scenic images, 1910–50, National Library of Australia.