Marion Slitine
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Art under occupation
The Young Artist of the Year (Palestine)
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Dozens participate every two years in one of the flagship events of the Palestinian art scene, the Young Artist of the Year Award – YAYA for those in the know – organised since 2000 by the philanthropic family-run Qattan Foundation, one of the few institutions promoting culture in Palestine. Offering resources to rather precarious Palestinian artistic infrastructures, the YAYA has become an unmissable event in the cultural calendar. Open to any artist between twenty-two and thirty, the award is targeted at all young Palestinians from ‘historical Palestine and its diaspora’, regardless of their place of residence. It offers artists from the West Bank as well as from Gaza, Jerusalem, Haifa, London or Berlin a public platform where they can come together to compete for a visual art award that is unique in the region. The YAYA is a rare opportunity for Palestinian artists to produce work outside the many constraints they normally face: the obvious political problems, a cultural scene mainly confined to Ramallah and the fact that the support they receive from the private sector and a handful of international organisations is very limited.

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