The Last Supper

Scanned medium format photograph and text (extracts from Mikhail Gorbachev's speech – Declaration of fall of the Soviet Union. December 1991)

Khalil Sakakini Cultural Centre, Ramallah, 2012

Alaa captures a photograph of a dilapidating photograph in a small shop in Birzeit of the famous mural depicting The Last Supper. The photograph stands as a record and a document of a disappearance –that of the mural- but it also records a very particular moment; the one before the last; that moment on the very brink of an end so often hinged by a certain failure or betrayal. One of the questions that the work poses is: could photography capture a historical moment? Can it create an event? Is photography able to construct memory? Or does it exist as a physical entity outside the subject? It also questions photography as a medium through questioning this very specific moment when things start to unfold. Both form and the weight of historical associations perform an originary moment, one that is associated with a political crack.