The Novel of Nonel and Vovel is a collaboration with the Palestinian artist Larissa Sansour that entails a graphic novel (Charta, 2009), digital collages and leaflets, public events, and an additional participatory piece entitled Falafel Road.
The graphic novel charts the story of two anti-heroes, based on the Israeli-born and Palestinian-born identities of the artists, who try to save Palestine from the occupation and imagine a new liberated future. The work is rooted in my ongoing research into Jewish identities in the Arab and Islamic world, and in my research interest in the management of bodies under state control and in the creative and ethical conditions for artistic responses to the occupation of Palestine, both in the art world and outside of it. Each element of this collaborative project derives from our research into these issues.
Falafel Road was themed around postcolonial questions regarding the systematic eradication and appropriation of Palestinian cultural heritage in Israel, including the case of the falafel, which has become a national culinary symbol of Israel. The work was set in 20 diverse falafel eateries in London and was advertised and open to the public, who took part in the meals and in relevant debates and discussions.