RECYCLED BAG MAKING WORKSHOPannelys
For the exchange program between students from the University of Siegen (Germany) and Birzeit Univeristy we organized a special ‘Disarming workshop’. Guided by Qusai Saify (founder Origami Palestine) participants discovered how to make bags and boxes out of recycled paper, and learned about the ideologies behind Disarming Design.
“By the 7th of March, we were in Palestine for two weeks and we would also stay for another two. On that day, we visited a workshop of the Disarming Design of Palestine Initiative in Ramallah. Three artists and designers presented their products to us of which each one had a special meaning related to Palestine. The entire team of artists aimed to spread alternative narratives regarding contemporary Palestine and tried to reflect upon the role of creative practices in situations of conflict. For example, they designed a wooden box in form of the region Gaza to symbolize the feelings of the inhabitants of the Gaza Strip who are neither allowed to leave the “box” nor able to fit into this limited space which is smaller than the German city of Cologne, but populated by about 2 Million people. In addition to this, the artists showed us a ceramic plate depicting distance markers to Gaza. For example, one plate showed the distance between Ramallah and Gaza which is only about 97 kilometres. We recognised that Gaza is not far from us in Ramallah, although we also could not reach it due to the closed borders. On the one hand, this showed us the close distance between Ramallah and Gaza, but on the other hand, we realised that – although we were right next to Gaza – we would not be able to enter it and get to know the life there.
After the presentation of a lot of different art works and goods, we made our own packaging (bags and boxes) from newspapers and flyers. It was really great to see how easy recycling – or in this case upcycling – can be done.
Then, we walked to our beloved Abu Hammam again – the restaurant with the best prices we had gotten to know so far (no covert advertising intended ;P). Afterwards, we went back home because it suddenly got quite cold and windy.”