In Virgin Land

In Virgin Land

2006, Digital Video. Stereo sound, Narration. 12 min

In Virgin Land cycles through striking images of the Israeli landscape, such as desert valleys, sea of Galilee, and hillsides. The use of a stationary camera, without any panning or zooming, gives the work an objective, documentary tone. The scenes are devoid of people or development, portraying a seemingly uninhabited, pristine paradise. An audio voice-over speaking in Hebrew, and accompanied by English subtitles, conveys the observations of a foreign visitor, sharing his impressions as he explores the land. While initially this spoken narrative might seem linear, it increasingly becomes disjointed. When the end credits roll, it is revealed that these observations were culled by Evron from a multitude of sources—the travelogues and writings of visitors from diverse lands whose explorations took place between the twelfth and nineteenth centuries. The video is a meditation on the longtime romanticizing of the region, and its status as holy land and homeland to multiple populations.  (LR)