01 Painting, Middle East Artists, The Art of War, Suleiman Mansour’s Untitled, The destruction of Palestine's Olive trees, with Footnotes #76

Henry Zaidan
2 min readApr 13, 2024
Suleiman Mansour
Untitled, c. 2010

The distruction of Palistine’s Olive trees
Oil on canvas
101.5 by 85cm. 40 by 33 1/2 in.
Private collection

Sold for 25,200 GBP in October 2022

Palestinian farmers know their land by the square-millimeter. To them, there is no such thing as “wild plants”: each sprout on their land is an expression of Palestinian life, as indigenous flora. They harvest the crops, take care of their trees, and walk along their vines with the same love and responsibility with which they protect their loved ones. Their families have been caretakers of these trees for generations; the olive trees have been feeding and protecting their caretakers for just as long.

In the West Bank, the Israeli army has banned Palestinian farmers from reaching their land and groups of settlers are burning farmers’ crops.

“The Occupation has prevented us from plowing, pruning, and reaping our fruits by expelling us from the land before and after the war. The settlers have always beaten us and threatened to kill us. They call in the army, which expels us from our land under false pretexts.” More on Palestinian farmers

Born in a little village near Ramallah in 1947, Suleiman Mansour maintained a great attachment to his native rural hometown and its customs, painting portraits of his relatives since his youngest age. In the 1970s, he took part in a thorough research project on the folkloric heritage of Palestinian culture, an initiative that profoundly shaped his subsequent active involvement in the Palestinian art movement. Preoccupied with the preservation and publication of traditional artworks, Mansour aimed to safeguard indigenous Palestinian culture while offering native forms of inspiration to new generations of artists and influencing contemporary art. More on Suleiman Mansour

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Henry Zaidan

In my Blog is an Online collection of significant paintings from the 1st century to today; complete with art-history and artist bibliographies.