Pro-Palestine Watermelon Artwork Removed from Burning Man Website - The World News

Pro-Palestine Watermelon Artwork Removed from Burning Man Website

A pro-Palestine artwork has been removed from the Burning Man website, according to Hyperallergic. The removal comes just days after the circulation of a petition on Change.org called for it to be taken down.

The work, titled From the River to the Sea, was never realized; its title references a slogan commonly invoked to protest Israeli military action in Gaza, where more than 35,000 people have been killed since October 7.

According to the Change.org petition, the piece contained “language that advocates for the annihilation of Israel.” Last month, the US House of Representatives declared its titular phrase antisemitic.

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A woman smiles with a grand church and canal behind her.

More than 1,250 signatories called for organizers to remove the sculpture’s rendering and description.

The watermelon-shaped fiberglass installation evokes a symbols of Palestinian resistance; its colors correspond to the ones seen on the Palestinian flag.

Burning Man spokesperson Dominique Debucquoy-Dodley said in a statement to the San Francisco Gate that the work was removed because it was “likely not an actual art piece coming to Black Rock City” and because it was “intended to stir an emotional response within the Burning Man community.”

Select projects at Burning Man receive grants, but all participants are invited to create installations so long as they adhere to safety standards outlined by the event.

According to the listing, From the River to the Sea was submitted by the Gaza-based group Decolonize Now. No contact information or website was provided.

This year, Burning Man is slated to run from August 24 through September 2 at the Black Rock City venue in Nevada.

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