Time is Now, Yalla!

Time is Now, Yalla! is an art project that happened in Israel and Palestine. JR and his team have set up giant photobooths, which ran in September 2011, turning out about 1,000 photos each day. Palestinians and Israelis were invited to visit and, in exchange for a personal statement, received a large-format portrait they can paste wherever they wish - either on their own or as part of a group. In addition, independent teams of photographers and pasters were there to paste, and engage new participants.

In the context of the Israeli/Palestinian situation reaching a crossroads - of a reshaping of the Arab world and of Israeli society urging for social justice - the Time Is Now to listen to the silent majority that believes the solution leading to 2 states for 2 peoples is waiting for implementation, and will bring peace and shared prosperity.

The project is called "Time Is Now, Yalla!" because "Yalla!" is an Arabic word used by both Palestinians and Israelis to say "let's go".

Context

Four years after the Face 2 Face project, JR decided to return to the Middle East, as a "printer". On site INSIDE OUT teams provide to all those who want it their portraits printed in large format free of charge.

In September 2011, the Palestinian Authority is expected to ask for the recognition of Palestine as member state to the UN. Israelis are demonstrating for social justice. Within this context, the INSIDE OUT project will give Palestinians and Israelis the opportunity to come together around a common artistic project.

Where?

On the Israeli side, a moving photobooth truck has visited Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Jaffa, Ramle, and other cities.

On the Palestinian side, two fixed photobooths were installed in Ramallah and Bethlehem, and other cities have been reached by the team.

About the INSIDE OUT Photobooths

In conjunction with his participatory global art project INSIDE OUT, JR is installing interactive Photobooths at select sites worldwide where individuals can instantly generate gigantic portraits, free of charge. The simple act of printing a single poster transforms JR's artistic method into a monumental work of art, distributed by the public at large as they see fit.

As an artistic installation the photobooth inverts the role of the gallery by bringing the creation process into a formal setting and encouraging participants to paste their portraits in the streets. The hundreds of images printed each day transform a playful past time into a potentially revolutionary act.

Face 2 Face Project

In 2007, during the Face 2 Face project, JR and Marco organized the largest illegal photography exhibition ever. For this project, portraits of Israelis and Palestinians were pasted face to face, in monumental formats on both sides of the wall and in several Palestinian and Israeli cities.

The Face 2 Face project - original statement

When we met in 2005, we decided to go together to the Middle‚ÄźEast to figure out why Palestinians and Israelis couldn't find a way to get along together.
We then travelled through the Israeli and Palestinian cities without speaking much. Just looking to this world with amazement. This holy place for Judaism, Christianity and Islam. This tiny area where you can see mountains, sea, deserts and lakes, love and hate, hope and despair embedded together.
After a week, we had the exact same conclusion: these people look the same; they speak almost the same language, like twin brothers raised in different families. A religious covered woman has her twin sister on the other side. A farmer, a taxi driver, a teacher, has his twin brother in front of him. And he is endlessly fighting with him.
It's obvious, but they don't see that. We must put them face to face. They will realize.
The Face 2 Face project consists of taking portraits of Palestinians and Israelis doing the same job and posting them face to face, in huge formats, in unavoidable places, on both Israeli and Palestinian sides. We want, at last, everyone to laugh and to think by seeing the portrait of the other and his own portrait.
In a very sensitive context, we have to be clear. We are in favour of a solution in which two countries, Israel and Palestine would live peacefully within safe and internationally recognized borders. All the bilateral peace projects (Clinton/Taba, Ayalon/Nusseibeh, Geneva Agreements) are converging into the same direction. We can be optimistic.
We hope that this project will contribute to a better understanding between Israelis and Palestinians.