Murals of Ireland & Palestine

Eóin Murray is an Irish Human Rights worker, based in Gaza City. He wrote an article for The Electronic Intifada website in January, called The Art of War. In the piece Murray compares the political street murals of Derry Northern Ireland to those in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza. Murray’s article is a partisan look at how mural works and other forms of public art have been politicized during times of great struggle - and how they’ve blossomed precisely because of intense conflict. It’s rare to see photos of Palestinian street art and murals, though the occupied territories are awash with the vibrant and confrontational images.

Getting a glimpse of the contentious artworks is reason enough to view Murray’s amply illustrated web article. But Murray’s piece of writing also champions those Irish artists whose “murals expressed the fears and memories of the people and, in so doing, assisted them in their struggle for human and civil rights, for peace and for justice.” Murray is referring to The Bogside Artists, those Irish muralists known for their passionate wall murals painted in the Bogside area of Derry, Northern Ireland. Fêted among Irish Republicans for extolling the cause of a free and independent Ireland, the Bogsider murals are fervently guarded by the communities in which they’re painted.

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