Terry Berkowitz

USA. Lives and works in New York.

Veil of Memory/Prologue: The Last Supper, 2014
Various media

In 1492 the Spanish monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand signed the Edict of Expulsion, giving Jews three months to convert to Christianity, leave the country, or die. Those who chose to leave had limited time to divest themselves of their belongings. They were allowed to take only what they could carry, but could not take gold, silver, or jewels.
The Veil of Memory/Prologue: The Last Supper is an installation piece that places the audience just few hours before the forced departure—before the masses were packed like cattle in fifteenth century sailboats—when they paused for a last supper standing on the threshold of the unknown.

Installed in the courtyard and the cistern of Cartagena’s Palace of the Inquisition, this piece reflects that grisly moment in history. Tables are set in the patio with empty platters, spoons and cups filled halfway with water. A sound emerges from below the tables. When entering the cistern visitors experience the darkness these exiles experienced five hundred years ago.

Berkowitz has been making installations since the seventies, combining various media: sculptural elements, audio, video, and photography. Her work deals with topics such as the daily life of Palestinians in Israeli-occupied territories, the violation of women’s rights, and forced emigrations throughout the world. She is currently working on her next project in refugee camps in Western Sahara.