The opportunity to spend time in Bethlehem allowed Sina Ata to reflect on what life means to people living in a walled city, using his artistic practice as an expression of personal experience in his photography and paintings.
During 2014, Sina Ata had the privilege of working in Bethlehem for several months. As an artist does, he documented his time, experience and observations of people's lives and their environment. Without a studio to paint, Sina photographed the walls that are Bethlehem, from the ancient laneways to the illegal barrier that currently confines the city. Sina develops the concept from observation to immersion, then pares back the visual experience to its minimal form in the paintings which were completed on his return to Amman.
Along with the walls, Sina photographed the people, those present and those past, not with suffering but with dignity. The youth are disappointed but defiant, asserting their identity, ironically in the occupier's language. And the lingering images and memories of those departed, who one expects would have been equally defiant.
It was an emotional experience for Ata who found for his psychological survival he had to build walls of his own. Sina Ata continues to be gratifyingly exploratory with his work, with contemporary social commentary and also a respect for the past in this exhibition .