Israel, West Bank, Jordan valley, Evil of the Eden
G.P.S : 31°52’ 16.99’’N 35° 26’ 02.67’’ E
The Jordan river, from Lake Tiberiad to the Dead Sea, adds layer over layer in its valley which bears the mark of a shaken History from biblical times till nowadays. In the heart of the Middle-East, its water, so precious and so disputed, is also a highly sensitive geopolitical border exacerbating political and identity attemps of Arabs, Jews and Christians alike.
More recently, Israeli representative bodies have shown their determination to pursue their expansionism policy over the valley still populated by 60 000 Palestinians, who are – for how long ? – the last Beduins still living freely in the region, fuelling explosive tensions between Jews and Arabs in the West Bank in the name of their holy religion.
Over the past twenty years Philippe Chancel’s photography has explored the complex, shifting and fertile territory where art, documentary and journalism meet. His is a constantly evolving project, focusing on the status of images when they are confronted with what constitutes “images” in the contemporary world.
Born in 1959, Philippe Chancel now works and lives in Paris. He was introduced to photography at a very young age, took an economics degree at the University of Paris (Nanterre) followed by a post-graduate diploma in journalism at the Cfpj in Paris.
Philippe Chancel’s work has been widely exhibited and published in France and abroad in a number of prestigious publications. These include “Regards d’artistes” – portraits of contemporary artists –, “Souvenirs” – a series of portraits of great capital cities (Paris, London, New York, Tokyo, Brussels) glimpsed through shop windows – produced in collaboration with Valérie Weill, and, lastly, his North Korean project, which brought him international recognition.
Philippe Chancel is currently working on a new long-term project entitled « Datazone » that aims to explore the many-faceted aftermaths within the documentary field, revealing some of the world’s most singular lands which are recurrently in the news or, conversely, hardly ever picked up by the media radar. This visionary quest has already taken him from Port au Prince to Kabul via Fukushima, Pyongyang, Astana, and some others destinations.