Wednesday, 29 January 2020
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  • Textile Details

    'Gegossenes Blei / Cast lead', by Heidi Drahota. (Photo: Claus Sperr)
    'Gegossenes Blei / Cast lead', by Heidi Drahota. (Photo: Claus Sperr)


    Title of Textile:Gegossenes Blei / Cast lead
    Maker: Heidi Drahota
    Country of Origin: Germany
    Year Produced: 2009
    Size (cm): 155cm x 110cm
    Materials: Backing felt material and felt threads
    Type of Textile: Quilted felt wall hanging

    The name Operation Cast Lead was taken from a poem For Hanukkah by the national poet of Israel, Haim Nachman Bialik who died in 1934. It is ironic, and rather macabre, that the name of a military operation which killed so many children in Gaza, should be taken from a poem about a children’s traditional toy: a spinning top made from solid or cast lead (ofert yetzuka) traditionally played with on the joyous holiday of Hanukkah.

    Teacher bought a big top for me,
    Solid lead, the finest known.
    In whose honor, for whose glory?
    For Hanukkah alone.

    This arpillera was titled Cast Lead to express horror about the Israeli war in Gaza, which began on the last day of Hanukkah.

    Heidi Drahota, the German artist who made this textile, said: “Women and children suffered most during the military offensive Operation Cast Lead …No protection, no escape place, no bunker, closed borders. Many fled into schools or public buildings. In the Gaza strip 760 people were killed between 27 December 2008 and 8 January 2009. According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, 42 per cent of the victims were children and women; this means more than 300.”

    Cast Lead was first shown at the international exhibition "Threads of Destiny: testimonies of violence, hope and survival", in Fürth, Germany, in 2009.

    Owner: Heidi Drahota collection, Germany
    Location: Roberta Bacic, Northern Ireland
    Original / Replica: Original
    Photographer: Claus Sperr

    Textile exhibited at: The Human Cost of War, 8/11/2009 - 21/11/2009
    The Human Cost of War - An Exhibition of Quilts and Arpilleras, 4/11/2010 - 15/01/2011
    Transforming threads of resistance, 27/02/2012 - 9/03/2012
    Textile Accounts of Conflicts, 17/11/2014 - 18/11/2014
    Textile Accounts of Conflicts, 6/02/2015 - 7/03/2015
    Tkanine otpora: glasovi žena / Textiles of Resistance: Women's Voices , 14/09/2019 - 30/09/2019

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