The PHOTO CO:EXISTENCE competition took place a mere three months after the events of May 2021, which saw a number of violent riots erupt in mixed cities across Israel, and was directly influenced by them. Photography as a tool which bridges sectors and genders, which requires no words or translation, was a platform to call on various photographers to express the complexity of life in a multinational society. Participants in the competition found creative ways to express social diversity, political reality, rifts and division alongside compassion and efforts to heal the fissures. This exhibition features the works of the competition’s three winners, whose vastly different works all bring to the fore the personal and humane rather than the national and official, creating an intimate, hopeful discourse.
In collaboration with the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Tel Aviv

Winners of the competition:
1st Place: Shy Ben Ari
2nd Place: Shay Aloni
3rd Place: Asaf Friedman

Special thanks to our jury panel:
Anisa Ashkar, Interdisciplinary Artist
Mira Awad, Singer, Songwriter, Actress and Television Presenter
Mesi Aychek, Coordinator of the International Humanitarian Law Project and Coordinator of Anti-Racism Education, ACRI
Ya’ara Raz Haklai, Chief Curator of the International Photography Festival and Content Manager, PHOTO IS:RAEL
Michal Shapira, Designer, Curator and Founder of 3×3 Active Gallery
Hader Washah, Artist
Richard S. Hayato Yamato, Cultural Attaché and Head of the Culture Department, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Tel Aviv

Our Hope is not yet Constructed | Asaf Friedman
Asaf Friedman, his wife Sharon and baby Noam have spent the past year living in a loud, dusty construction site. They assumed it was worth the suffering in order to end up with a bigger apartment. In practice, the mishaps, lockdowns, missile alarms during the military operation and the many physical difficulties transformed the neighbors and construction workers into a moving community that shared many moments of grace and humanity.

58-21 | Shy Ben Ari
Shy Ben Ari creates a meeting point between her personal history and the national one by combining photographs from two different archives. The first is a collection of images from the book “A Decade in Israel” (1958), which celebrates the State’s first decade, while the other is her own personal photographic archive of prosaic moments and places. Personal photographs are placed on top of the book’s pages, creating a new image which examines the gap between the promise of young Israel and our daily existence, and compares the mythical and the real.

Boundless | Shay Aloni
In a multicultural society rife with ethnic and national tensions, there is still a place for warm and hopeful meeting points and even the blooming of love between people of different religions, origins and social circumstances. Aloni’s project documents mixed Arab-Jewish families who must face the challenges of maintaining this kind of relationship. Both they and their children must tackle the complex obstacles of daily life and our political reality, which tug at the very core of the conflict between these two nations.

Nurit and Major Guy (Mustafa) Gadir with their Daughter Aya, Bir al-Maksur, 2008
Nehama and Yitzhak (Hashem Shibli) Shoval, Barak, 2007
Leila (Helen, Lea Bashetzky) and Ahmed Falah abu Raja Jabarin, Umm al-Fahem, 2012


Top Photo: Shy Ben Ari

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