Palestinian schoolchildren recreate Picasso's Peace Dove 311.
(photo credit: Tovah Lazaroff)
“One more person at the bottom left of the A,” American aerial artist John
Quigley yelled out.
He looking down at the desert valley next to the
Mount of Temptation, 11 km. northwest of Jericho, on Friday.
Palestinian children were busy forming a human mosaic in the shape of the dove
peace symbol popularized by Pablo Picasso in 1949.
First, Quigley had a
team of adults sketch out in the sand a large outline of the dove, including an
olive branch and the words “Love All.”
Then, under the morning sun,
hundreds of children from schools run by the United Nations Relief and Works
Agency sat single file, on top of the lines, until their bodies formed an image
that could be seen by those standing on cliffs overlooking the
From his perch above the valley, Quigley yelled out directions
“That looks so much better,” he said. “And the dove
“You are awesome!” he yelled at the youngsters when they
were all seated.
Quigley, who has created this kind of aerial art all
over the world from California to the Amazon, was invited to Jericho by
He told The Jerusalem Post
that he jumped at the invitation
because of the region’s deep political and religious history.
there is conflict I feel like there are things that we can do to bring people
together,” he said. “I work with large crowds of people to create images on
landscapes for social and environmental issues.
“If anyplace needs more
love, it is this place and these people,” Quigley said.
The children in
the valley below, he said, were no different than their peers in other parts of
“They want a future and this is a way to involve them in
speaking to the world.”
“From this iconic place we will send out this
message of love, and hopefully that will help lead to a path of
The Jericho area’s physical space has a “resonance” to it, he
“It is an amazing landscape and it is very powerful with all the
stories and all the religious traditions,” he said.
“Jericho at 258
meters below sea level] is the deepest place on earth. So let us go to a deep
place to this message [of love],” Quigley said.