seed bombs

Knowing I’d be seeing Elio soon in Tel Aviv, I wanted to plan some kind of a good mom & son activity to occupy our time together.  I brought along our copy of this great book I bought for him last year. We had already used it to leave secret messages on the subway and take random walks in our neighborhood with a cut-out, tape-together die, which has arrows on each face.

Just before leaving the West Bank, I got a bunch of seeds and some red clay from a garden supply store in Beit Sahour, along with some compost.

Walking through the Bethlehem checkpoint with all this extra stuff to carry was not fun, especially since I looked like a crazy person carrying bags of dirt alongside the cheap broken suitcase I had purchased in desperation in Jerusalem when I realized I had to carry my stuff into the old city. But I really wanted to make the seed bombs with Palestinian seeds! Helpful people carried some stuff through the numerous turnstiles for me and made it a lot easier.

My last trip through the checkpoint was my most eventful, since the soldiers saw the tripod in my suitcase with the metal detector, and made me unpack each new metal object they espied and put the suitcase through again five times, each pass occasioning a new state of disarray of personal belongings on the floor. In the next room at the passport control, on the other hand, guards waved me through without even looking at my ID.

On Christmas Eve, Elio flew in from New York via Istanbul, and on Christmas Day we met our numerous Israeli relatives at a wonderful family dinner. We got a little help and mixed up the recipe for the seed bombs.

We let them dry for a couple of days then threw them around Tel Aviv.

One of my inspirations for this effort is the Telegarden, a wonderful project by my friend and teacher Joe Santarromana.

Our final art guerilla act was to deposit our last Palestinian seed bombs in the tacky vases in Ben Gurion Airport, as we left to fly home.

And now, two months after leaving Israel, we just got these delightful photos ….

Some of the photos in this post were taken by my brothers and the last two by Noa and Amnon.

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