Following “a week of strenuous effort” by the family of Palestinian artist and historian Kamal Boullata and their lawyers, the renowned artist’s body will be buried in Jerusalem.
According to WAFA, it was Boullata’s “wish to return and be buried in Jerusalem”, his birth place.
“Kamal Boullata, the son of Jerusalem, will finally make it back to his homeland for burial at the Cemetery of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem at Mt. Zion next to his family and ancestors,” said the statement issued by his family.
Since 1967, Boullata had been “barred from Jerusalem because he happened to be out of the country, for an exhibit in Beirut in 1967 when the Israeli occupation started,” WAFA reported.
“All his efforts to return to Jerusalem failed, except for a brief visit in 1984 which was memorialized in the film ‘Stranger at Home’,” the news agency added.
“The right of every Palestinian to return to his homeland is a sacred right. It is particularly important for Jerusalemites, for whom the Holy City is part of their lives and essence,” said his family.
“It is sad that so many are denied this right, but it is a bitter satisfaction when someone of his stature and world-known respect is finally allowed his last wish. May he rest in peace, and may his memory be forever.”
The funeral mass will take place on 19 August at the cemetery of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem at Mt. Zion.
Boullata was born in Jerusalem in 1942, and grew up in the Old City.
He graduated from the Academy of Rome and the Corcoran Art Museum School in Washington, DC. His publications include “Palestinian Art: From 1850 to the Present” and “Belonging and Globalisation: Critical Essays in Contemporary art and Culture”.
After time in the USA and France, he lived in the German capital Berlin for a number of years before he died.