Holy Land, mixed-media on mylar and paper, 2007, by Debra Stuckgold, JVP Artist Council member (California)


Besides the JVP Arts & Culture blog going live…

And besides the revamped application to join the JVP Arts & Culture Network…

And besides applications to join the JVP Artist Council opening this May…

There’s a 1000+ gathering of JVP members starting THIS FRIDAY in Chicago, where dozens of workshops, exhibit tables, rituals, performances, and conversations will explore and amplify the vital role of arts & culture in the movement…

Below is a guide to these happenings throughout the weekend!
(You can also click here for a specific day: Friday, Saturday, Sunday; and here is the online program book.)

*SPECIAL NOTE to artists & cultural workers attending the NMM:
Grab your lunch & head to room “Hyde Park B” from 1:15 til 2:00p on Saturday (4/1) for a Meet-n-Greet!


Activestills exhibition at the village of Bilin, Palestine




  • Just Visions film screening:  Lessons From The First Intifada On The 30th Anniversary Of The Uprising: Organizing Strategies, Women’s Leadership And Media Representation In Movement-building
  • Telling Our Stories: An Interactive Media Experience: an interactive storytelling booth where JVP members will engage in unscripted interviews about their political life stories. (Featured throughout the weekend.)
  • Kabbalat Shabbat Services AND Secular Shabbat Gathering (both w/readings & song)
  • Community Sing: Come learn and share songs for Shabbat, from across our traditions and ancestries, and for the streets.
  • New Films from Palestine: Community and Documentary Shorts

Watercolor on paper, 2015, by Ellen O’Grady, JVP Artist Council member (North Carolina)




LUNCH (12:30-2:15p):


  • How to Reimagine The World: Solidarity through Art  [Micah Bazant, Shachaf Polakow, Stormy Staats]: We’ll share principles and models of ethical collaboration between artists and frontline communities.
  • Self-Loving Anti-Zionist  [Una Osato, Dan Fishback]: Searching for self-love in a time of hate. This workshop will feature performance excerpts by Una Aya Osato aka exHOTic other, followed by a lively Q&A, and an opportunity for participants to create and share pieces of laughter from their own journeys with Zionism.
  • Greeting Ghosts: Artists Resisting Zionist Narratives  [Ismail Khalidi, Selma Al-Aswad, Ellie Wolfe Taylor, MJ Kaufman, Shelby Handler]: This salon will showcase creative work by Palestinian, Ashkenazi Jewish, and queer anti-Zionist artists who are partners and collaborators in the movement. By reclaiming histories and ancestors through comics, personal essay, and plays, these works resist Zionism and imagine liberatory futures.
  • Collective Resilience Strategies for Long-Haul Resistance  [Wendy Elisheva Somerson, Morgan Bassichis]: How do our groups renew and resource themselves in this long-haul struggle for racial justice and Palestinian liberation? In this workshop we will explore a few strategies to move out of our heads and into our bodies, connect deeply with one another, and incorporate ritual and creativity into our work.
  • Artistic Activism Lab  [Sarah Sills, Una Osato, Morgan Bassichis, Esther Farmer]:  How can we draw on the power of art and culture to build and win campaigns? In this participatory workshop, we will offer a framework and some tools for artistic activism, and as a case study, explore how chapters and councils can use them in local organizing for the JVP national campaign. Everyone is welcome!
  • Writing Workshop: Our Journeys to Freedom & Solidarity  [Deborah Maayan MA]:  What keeps us going in doing this work? Reflecting and writing can help us sustain ourselves through remembering what brought us to this work, addressing conflicts we have, and creating reminders of what inspires us. Writing exercises, with time for optional sharing facilitated by experienced writing workshop leader.
  • Singing for Organizers  [Rachel Brown]:  Group singing is a tool that can help us connect with our values, shift stuck energy, and bring focus and clarity to direct actions. This workshop will explore how songs and sacred chants can support organizing work and the choreography of protests.
  • They Were Promised the Sea  [Kathy Wazana]:  Film Screening and Q&A/discussion with the audience.
  • Activestills Collective: 12 Years Documenting the Social Justice Struggles in Palestine/Israel:  Since 2005, the Activestills photography collective has documented different struggles in Palestine/Israel from the popular struggle against the Wall, to African refugees in Israel. Join co-founder, Oren Ziv, and Gaza photographer, Basel al Yazouri, for a discussion on the importance and place of photography as part of the struggle.


  • Film Screening: Open Bethlehem
  • Telling Our Stories


  • [Led by Rabbinical Student Rabbi Miriam Grossman]: A Jewish ritual that marks the transition from Shabbat to a new week with fire, wine, and spices. It’s about moving from rest to creation, from visioning to building. Join us for some fiery political ritual to prepare us for the work ahead. All are welcome!


  • The Gaza Mono-Logues: An Adaptation in 5 Voices
    [produced by Peñasco Theatre Collective]

The Gaza Mono-Logues is a bold, innovative production that incorporates dance, acrobatics, dramaturgy and visual art. Accompanied by a compelling original score, an inter-generational cast of Indigenous artists and artists of color gracefully articulate poignant observations by young people living under siege. The monologues – authored in 2010 by teenagers living in Gaza working in collaboration with the Gaza-and Ramallah-based Ashtar Theatre – position hopes, dreams, and resiliencies of young Palestinians at the center of the realities of Israeli occupation and war.

Daring to imagine a future that includes Palestinians’ dreams in a present seeking to erase them is a powerful reminder of the resilient nature of tender hearts and that creative expression and performance can be a force for healing, transformation and re-humanization.
                                                                (Rebekah Tarín, Director; member of The Peñasco Theater Collective and JVP Artist Council)




How do we not let our grief, rage, and fears overwhelm and isolate us in these intense times? Join in community – in silence, art, music, and cross-faith prayer – to connect to deep support as we move towards courage and resilience to fortify our commitment to justice and liberation.



  • The Art of Social Justice Organizing  [Aurora Levins Morales, Ricardo Levins Morales]:  This workshop will explore the power of art to affect consciousness, which is the goal of all organizing. Drawing on the presenters’ decades of experience, and the experiences, creativity, and questions of participants, we will learn to apply the insights of cultural activism to real-world situations.
  • Film Screening and Discussion: Pinkwashing Exposed: Seattle Fights Back  [Dean Spade, Selma Al-Aswad, Wendy Elisheva Somerson]:  Come learn about a Seattle victory against Israeli pinkwashing (the use of particular rhetoric around LGBTQ rights to cover up the state’s abuses), and discuss the flm’s events, strategies against pinkwashing, and queer organizing for Palestine with key folks from the film! Film is captioned in English.
  • Multi-Movement Building Through Art  [Jen Marlowe, Brittany King, Nadia Ben-Youssef]:  How can we use art and creative projects to mobilize for liberation and justice across different communities? We will be using “There Is A Field” as a case-study – a play about a Palestinian teen killed by Israeli police. Through post-play discussions and community residencies, we’ll explore parallels between oppression experienced in Palestine/Israel and the U.S., and nurture community and movement building across different struggles.
  • Film Premier and Discussion: Mizrahi Stories of Resistance  [Rebecca Pierce; Granate Sosnoff (intro)]:  Screening of new video featuring Mizrahi voices. This film is the first in a series by documentary filmmaker Rebecca Pierce. Mizrahi Stories (title-in-progress) is part of Israel and Palestine Through a Racial Justice Lens. Pierce will also show interviews from Ethiopian Jews, African refugees, and Palestinians.

BDS Marching, Ethan Heitner, JVP Artist Council member (NYC)


WP-Backgrounds Lite by InoPlugs Web Design and Juwelier Schönmann 1010 Wien