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Emily Jacir, Crossing Surda: A Record of Going to and from Work, 2002

"In December 2002, Jacir decided to record her daily walk from the occupied territories to Birzeit University—a journey that inevitably includes crossing the Surda checkpoint. When Jacir arrived at the checkpoint, Israeli soldiers realized that she was filming and demanded her ID. She presented them with her American passport, which was thrown into the mud by the soldiers, and she was informed that she was on “Israeli” territory and that no filming was permitted. She was detained by the soldiers for three hours and her videotape was confiscated. Refusing to be deterred, when Jacir made it home she adapted her bag so that it could conceal a video camera. After that, for the next eight days, she secretly video documented her crossing of the Surda checkpoint. The artwork Crossing Surda: A Record of Going to and from Work is the result of that daily documentation."

-- Matthew Bowman

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