Devora Neumark is an interdisciplinary artist-researcher,
educator, lecturer and consultant for the Assembly of First Nations of Quebec.
For her collaboration with De-Colonizer, Devora Neumark performed "Mansura Revisited" (scroll down for the video).
The first part of the day was spent cleaning up a room in the school ruins, making it as beautiful as possible, ready to receive visitors; a metaphor for the welcome return of the refugees. Eléonore documented Devora’s labouring gestures, as did the Communications Officer of the Golan for the Development of the Arab Villages. Devora also documented her presence and the presence of others who accompanied her and at times contributed to the cleaning process. The second half of the day was devoted to the beautification of the room, as well as conversations with locals and family members and the processing of emotion stirred up by the experience of it all.
The video accompanying this text focuses mainly on Devora’s cleaning and beautification gestures. The process however is contextualized with visuals of the United Nations presence and military access warnings as well as the sounds of bombing heard from only a few kilometers away. Mansura Revisited was not performed in a vacuum: the ruins of Mansura cannot be abstracted from the contested physical and psychosocial geographies. As an artwork, beyond the living memories of the live art performance, Mansura Revisited continues to circulate as a video projection/installation. The video (which includes documentary material from both Eléonore and Devora and which was created by Devora in collaboration with videographer Jeroen Deraeve) critically and poetically engages the role that aesthetics can play in regional decolonization while pointing to the symbolic and physical legacies associated with expulsion and occupation.