Asylum seekers from Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia take long journeys and risk their lives to reach Malta, Italy, Cyprus, Spain, and recently mostly Greece. They often travel with little money, among hunger, exhort and fatigue. After months, or even years of the journey, they reach Libyan or Turkish coast and take this final step: cross the Mediterranean Sea in a dinghy. And here they are, in Europe! Here they are – with a hope their lives are now free, wealthy and safe, thinking that Mediterranean waters have changed it all.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is much a media conflict. Israel, being better organized and far wealthier, have been winning this awkward competition for many years and tried to present Palestinians as expremists. I decided to approach Palestinian men aged between 18 and 50. I travelled the West Bank and asked my models to pose in their natural work environment.
Palestinians do not have access to many goods and modern commodities, what seems to make their lives less ambitious but also less hectic.
They have a great respect towards their tradition and religion. What I have found most interesting is that they are very confident and proud.
Asylum seekers who illegally cross Mediterranean waters in a dinghey are usually allowed to have only one small bag on them. They take whatever is most needed. It always is a mobile phone and ID. Some people take their combs, some take preyer beads. Children hide small toys in their pockets. They get into dinghies with their life jackets on, having the water as a carrier and an enemy. The Sea tries to grab it all. The Greek shore becomes a museum of past lives of thousands of migrants, who left part of their identity behind.