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ONESTATE Embassy Art Collective

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OneState Embassy Art Collective 

OneState Embassy Art Collective is a conceptual on going work of art, which offers an artistic perspective on the concept of the state. 
It is an idealistic, utopian state which sees man as citizens of the world. It is an art asylum, an abstract thought, in which every person has an equal right to exist, regardless of where they were born and where they live.
OneState Embassy activates the thought and challenges the accepted perception. As the art collective was founded by Palestinian and Israeli artists, the thought seeks to penetrate the local political conception and offer a global, universal point of view; Civil and egalitarian.

The Embassy

One State´s diplomatic mission in the 19th district in Vienna serves as a hub for like-minded artists in which they can freely create and foster diversity and cultural richness.
 
The Embassy presents itself as a place for workshops of all sorts, for exhibitions, performances, panel discussions, and other events. The place will be holding workshops and events in our spacious garden and in the two garden studios.
 
We are looking at collaborating with artists from all origins and from all media who are interested in breaking up arbitrary boundaries that aim at dividing us. We are very interested in working with artists coming from conflict and war zones from around the world (See Decomposing Reality), and to jointly look into developing a new language of transcending actual borders between each other and celebrate our similarities as well as differences to bring us to a wider understanding of unity and togetherness.

About us

Living in a world of war-making and of fastly deteriorating climate and humanitarian crises, the wish to build a hopeful alternative and to take part in building a wider movement for global justice and peace is palpable.

Living in a divided world where arbitrary boundaries are set up between people, where nationalisms and borders oppressively shape everyday life everywhere, artists of all origins seeking to collectively overcome these injustices should have an open safe space to work in freely, in a supportive and thriving environment.

The One State Embassy is such a place. It is a meeting place, a networking place, a collective working space for likewise thinking artists of all media who seek to break down arbitrary concepts of division, in a joint effort to find humane solutions for strident political problems and to envision hopeful alternatives for a better world.

Our Story

The idea for OneState Embassy originated in 2009, when Palestinian artist Osama Zatar and Israeli artist and researcher Tal Adler took part in an exhibition that brought Palestinian and Israeli artists together and showcased tight historical and cultural bonds between the two communities. Rather than perpetuating the conflict-ridden relations between Israel and Palestine, they decided to create the OneState Embassy, an art and political collective disseminating a message of unity and coexistence between Israelis and Palestinians.
 
Through presenting the duality of Israel and Palestine and highlighting the ideas of separation within the two-state concept, the OneState concept enables the deconstruction of the ongoing conflict and the unification of people within One.

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This is the first artwork of the OneState Embassy and its ambassadors, Osama Zatar and Tal Adler. In it they envisioned OneState, a country of a tight-knit community of Jews, Christian and Muslim Arabs living together in prosperity and unity. To the old footage of Jerusalem and Vienna, Osama and Tal added scenes of themselves acting as the ambassadors of the OneState Embassy. It shows the diplomats coming to Vienna, seeking financial help to build their new country. The video was shown at the Jewish Film Festival in 2009.

Consequently, OneState took part in panel discussions. Performances and workshops were held at the Academy of Fine Arts of Vienna, Ritesinstitute, the Jewish Film Festival in Vienna, El Hakawati Festival at Theater Nestroyhof, the International Symposium ‘Ich Bin Die Vielen’ to name a few. Ronen Eidelman was invited by OneState to a lecture on his `Jewish State of Weimar´.

 

Osama and Inbal met in Vienna in the 2019 Symposium entitled `The Middle East at Historical Crossroads´ held by transform! europe. They took part in a few joint exhibitions, before Osama invited Inbal to join OneState.
 

 
OneState was invited by Susanne Puhony to the exhibition SOO LONG at the gallery `Bearded  Bird´ in Vienna, an exhibit dedicated to the question of heritage, in which Osama presented his work on converted weapons. Inbal Volpo was officially introduced as ambassador to OneState during the opening of the exhibition. Inbal and Osama planted a seedling as an invitation to a new beginning with gardening tools made from converted weapons made by Osama, followed by the raising of the official flag of the Embassy and a briefing in four languages.

 

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Ambassadors and Diplomatic Staff

Osama Zatar, Mag. Arts. Based in Vienna, born in Ramallah, Palestine. 
I am a sculptor and political artist. Masters in Art from Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Vienna. Born in occupied Palestine as a son of a three generation-long war, my childhood experiences constantly influence my themes in sculpture. My personal encounters of being caged within borders and subjected to checkpoints is a main topic within my artistic work. Being married to an Israeli woman and becoming a father to a daughter further emphasized the constant segregation that is happening between Palestinians and Israelis. Throughout my artistic career I have utilized my struggle to leave Palestine and break away from borders as a tool of communicating with my surroundings, using these incidents to speak against such forces.
The OneState project was born out of my family situation. Out of political conflicts that have deeply shaped my life, influencing my desire to save the land in which this constant conflict exists and to present idealistic solutions which do not look for what divides between us, but on the contrary what can unify us. Let´s create a more hopeful narrative!

 

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Inbal Volpo, Bachelor of Arts. Based in Vienna, from Oranit, Israel.
I am an interdisciplinary artist and art educator. I have studied Art at the Midrasha School of Art and at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design.
 
I grew up in a settlement located on the Green Line Border, which I knew as our backyard. It was a secular Zionist community imbued with patriotic faith and devoid of questioning. Since the Israeli government began to build settlements in the West Bank as a means of erasing and redefining the borders, we, the residents of the settlements have been serving as pawns in a political war of definition, blurring and erasure. For me, boundaries are not absolute, but elusive and inaccessible. In my work I examine the spectrum on which they move, and the inherent contradiction between finitude and its absence. 

 

Ruth Katz,  Musician and Educator.
B.Mus  -  Rubin Academy for Music and Dance, Jerusalem.
MA and DMA (Doctor of Musial Arts) – Stanford university, California.
Based in Vienna, Born in Israel.


I was born is Jerusalem a few years after the establishment of the state, and the Palestinian Nakba. I grew up in an immigrant neighbourhood in which most houses were Palestinians’. Fortunately, our house belonged to the Franciscan Church. After the six-day-war our next-door neighbours were Palestinians. We lived like family, and even the 73’ October war did not interfere with our warm relationships. So, I know coexistence is possible.
 
Work: After returning to Israel from the USA I led the music department of Ironi Alef High School for the Art - Tel Aviv, one of the most prominent high schools in the country.
Besides my routine teaching duties, I have established an ongoing youth exchange program with Germany and Austria, under the title “The Triumph of the Soul.” In this program I wanted to demonstrate the importance of art for the human’s soul, as one holocaust survivors manifested, “music saved me”, and another claimed, “music and the art gave meaning to our miserable life in the Ghetto.” The program deals with the Degenerate Music, Entartete Musik, the music that was forbidden by the Nazis. The program generated dialogues and friendships among the young participants as well as among their teachers.
 
Political activities: Besides being a vehement demonstrator, be it in Tel Aviv or Sheick Jarach, I was a member of the women Checkpoint Watch organisation; we observed and documented the conduct in the checkpoints that dissect the West Bank and through which the Palestinians are forced to pass in their everyday lives. For some time, I was active with the Villages Group, trying to promote the establishing a Music School in the village of Salem near Nablus. I gave a talk about this experience in different platforms, the 2010 conference the International Society of Music Education, that took place in Greece was one of them.

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Tal Adler, Based in Berlin, Born in Israel.
I am an artist and researcher, currently working at the Centre for Anthropological Research on Heritage and Museums (CARMAH), the Humboldt University of Berlin. For the TRACES project (EU H2020, 2016-2019) I developed long term creative coproductions between artists, researchers and institutions, for creating meaningful and sustainable ways to disseminate contentious cultural heritages. For over two decades I have been developing methods of collaborative artistic research for engaging with difficult pasts and conflicted communities in Israel/Palestine and in Europe

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