/ HAS MAGAZINE
DRAWING STONES PROJECT
Roni Ben Ari
Visual Artist
Roni Ben Ari questions the meaning of the word 'Earth' by exploring two essential elements: stone and wheat.

Drawing: Stone, Wheat, Stone, Roni Ben Ari, 2013

Drawing: “Stone, Wheat, Stone” is the journey of stones that fly through the wind and lands to another place, but in its fall to the ground, in the rustle of the lines, it creates a new landscape.

Roni Ben Ari Drawing: Stone, Wheat, Stone 2014
Roni Ben Ari Drawing: Stone, Wheat, Stone 2014

This project was photographed in the area of the West Bank, in Palestinian territories. Each morning Roni passed through the Tarkumiya checkpoint on the way to the West Bank, an area inhabited by a mixed population consisting of Israelis and Palestinians.

There, Roni met people, who have been working together, on a daily basis, for over fourteen years, digging stones.

The dolomite stones were hewn from the earth-covered mountain, and they changed the country’s pristine landscape into a growing and thriving built economy that provides its citizens with elements for quality of life and for better social and economic welfare.

Roni Ben Ari Drawing: Stone, Wheat, Stone 2014

The stone supply the construction of roads, homes, infrastructure, but also fences and walls, but also used to sustain flourishing agricultures and development habitat, and where wheat grows abundantly, which becomes a symbol of life, the basic component for making bread.

Stone and wheat -both derive from the same land.

The stone is hewed from the land (the soil) and taken across the border to another land. The definition of a land, as the mother earth, becomes a question concerning possible divisions, borders, ownership, nations and separations between cultures.

Roni Ben Ari Stills 2014

Roni transforms the powers of these two elements to question them. Stones and wheat, are both symbols of life. People of all cultures living in the middle east feed from the same wheat and use the same stones.

In this work stones can fly and dance in mid-air creating lines and drawings as they fall. They are lighter than air and graceful. Even the dynamite which is used for the explosion is reduced to a candy like material, pink and beautiful, cute. It is not presented dangerous nor as powerful. Roni questions the notion of danger, use of explosives, and the sense given to words and elements we produce or use.

Roni Ben Ari Stills 2014
Roni Ben Ari Stills 2014

So much meaning in words. In this series Drawing: “Stone, Wheat, Stone”.  Roni Ben Ari is trying to dissolve the significance of these two powerful fundamental elements of life:  stone and wheat -both springing from the earth.


Living in a land going through continuous conflict, focused mostly on propriety and the rights to land, pose a fundamental question on the meaning of the word “Land”. Land is a soil, dirt, that nurtures life.

Roni Ben Ari Drawing: Stone, Wheat, Stone 2014

In Hebrew, the word for the earth is “Adama”. Adama is the feminine version of the word Adam, meaning a man. Both are made of Dam: Dam is blood and therefore flesh. The earth is then the mother of life, and the words earth and adama pose question on the notion of (my) land.    

The blending of ‘ADAM’ and ‘HMA’ represent HUMANITY: as the male and female elements in one; in many languages, ‘Ama’ means mother, a link to mother earth.

Margalit Berriet & Rony Ben Ari

Roni Ben Ari (b.Ramat Gan, Israel) began her career as a news journalist, first for Israel Broadcast Authority Radio in Tel Aviv, and later as a television reporter and producer for Second Authority News Station, where she reported on human-interest stories on locations ranging from nursing homes to detention centers. Working since 1998 as a fine artist, her still photography and videos have been in 35 exhibitions in more than 15 international cities, including “Markers 8” at the 54th Venice Biennale (2011); “Transmission Body” at DOCUMENTA, Kassel, Germany (2012); and “Woven Consciousness” at the Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv (2014). “Throughout my career,” says the artist, “I would delve very deeply into a particular topic to which no one would try to come even remotely close.”

https://ronibenari.com/

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Truth and Belief
JUNE 2021
Author

Roni Ben Ari (b.Ramat Gan, Israel) began her career as a news journalist, first for Israel Broadcast Authority Radio in Tel Aviv, and later as a television reporter and producer for Second Authority News Station, where she reported on human-interest stories on locations ranging from nursing homes to detention centers. Working since 1998 as a fine artist, her still photography and videos have been in 35 exhibitions in more than 15 international cities, including “Markers 8” at the 54th Venice Biennale (2011); “Transmission Body” at DOCUMENTA, Kassel, Germany (2012); and “Woven Consciousness” at the Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv (2014). “Throughout my career,” says the artist, “I would delve very deeply into a particular topic to which no one would try to come even remotely close.”

https://ronibenari.com/

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