June 5th, 2017, marked the 50th anniversary of the Six-Day War. Half a century has passed since Israel gained control of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Ahead of that date, I was commissioned to photograph a story by Dan Ephron for a special issue of The Washington Post Outlook Section.
Photo Editor: Chloe Coleman
Layout Design: Danielle Rindler
Visitors are seen in the Bell Caves, one of the ancient caves of Beit Guvrin-Maresha National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located near the city of Beit Shemesh, Israel, on June 1, 2017. The network of hundreds of man-made caves excavated near the ancient towns of Maresha and Beit-Guvrin bear witness to a succession of historical periods of excavation and usage stretching over 2,000 years, from the Iron Age to the Crusades, as well as a great variety of subterranean construction methods.
The Israel Museum in Jerusalem is displaying works by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, for the first time in Israel. His new exhibition "Maybe, Maybe Not" is made of a series of installation works, including: "Sunflower Seeds," a collection of millions of handcrafted and painted porcelain seeds, weighing approximately 23 tons, that is meant to critique China's modern-day mass production methods that have overwhelmed traditional manufacturing and handicraft. "Trees," a set of sculptures of trees made of dead roots, trunks and branches collected in southern China. “Soft Ground” has particular resonance for Israel - a 250-square-meter (2,700-square-foot), hand woven carpet that replicates the floor of the Haus der Kunst in Munich, the gallery where Nazi-approved artwork was displayed during the Third Reich. In addition, wallpapers across part of the exhibition depict the plight of refugees while mixing in classical images. The exhibition will run through Oct. 28.
In February 2016, the Tel Aviv Museum reportedly pulled an exhibition by Ai and the Israeli photographer Miki Kratsman because of political pressures. It had been due to include portraits of Palestinians. According to the museum, there were problems scheduling the show.
Tourists are reflected in the glass facade of the Davidson Center, at the Jerusalem Archaeological Park, near the Western Wall, the holiest site where Jews can pray, in Jerusalem's Old City, on May 10, 2017.
A Christian nun passes in front of a graffiti which was spray-painted by artist Solomon Souza over a closed shutter at the Mahane Yehuda Market in Jerusalem, Israel, on April 5, 2017.
A model acts as she is being filmed for a new public relations campaign by the , at the Mahane Yehuda Market in Jerusalem, Israel, on April 5, 2017.
Eshtaol Forest, Israel, March 2017
Horses are seen grazing at the West Bank Jewish settlement of Har Bracha, located on the southern ridge of Mount Gerizim near the Palestinian city of Nablus, on March 22, 2017.
The high priest of the ancient Samaritan community, Ovadia Cohen, poses for a portrait on Mount Gerizim, near the West Bank Palestinian city of Nablus, on March 22, 2017.
According to tradition, the Samaritans are descendants of the northern Israelite tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh, who survived the destruction of the Kingdom of Israel (Samaria) by the Assyrians in 722 BCE. Samaritans follow four principles of faith: One God – the God of Israel; One Prophet – Moses son of Amram; One Holy Book – The Torah, the first five books of the Bible and one Holy Place – Mount Gerizim. Today, the small community numbers about 700 people, approximately half of them live in a village at Mount Gerizim, near the Palestinian city of Nablus, and the rest in the Israeli city of Holon, south of Tel Aviv.