These political cartoons made by Israeli teens offer an interesting insight into the issues that preoccupy Israeli youth today.
The Jerusalem Press Club, in collaboration with the Israel Cartoon Museum, launched a competition titled titled “Cartoon, Criticism, Care.”
In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack, the competition deals with the balance between freedom of speech and the need to be sensitive to other’s religious and personal beliefs.
A jury of renowned cartoonists from around the world chose 20 finalists, as well as the top three entries, who received cash prizes of up to 3000 NIS.
Here are the top three entries, explained in the artists’ own words:First Prize
Amit Katz, 16, Hadera
“It is common knowledge that in Israel, in order to be recognized as a married couple, and to get married in the first place, people have to marry under the auspices of the Chief Rabbinate. However, the Israeli population includes people who are not Orthodox and who – as equal citizens - would perhaps wish to marry in different ways. The cartoon illustrates the monopoly the Rabbinate holds in all matters pertaining to marriage, and the fact that many of those who marry in the Rabbinate are not doing so willingly, but rather act as marionettes so that they can marry their loved ones and be recognized as a married couple”Second Prize
Yosepha Yaacobowitz, 16, Ra’anana
Fun at the beach 2116
“This cartoon criticizes the people and the institutions that contribute to the pollution of the sea. People throw their garbage into the sea without a second thought, and industrial plants are polluting it with their waste, toxic materials and oil spills. However, in the spirit of the competition, instead of showing explicitly the people who cause this pollution and thus insulting them, I chose to criticize them in a different way, by showing the results of their irresponsible conduct. That’s why I chose to illustrate in the cartoon the “fun” which people will find on their beaches in 2116.”
Hava Herman, 15, Jerusalem
“In this cartoon, I try to show the insecurities people feel in expressing their views, even to those closest to them. By pretending to read high-brow elitist Haaretz while actually reading popular Yisrael Hayom, the man hides from his partner the views with which he really identifies and presents another face outward”
The exhibition opens on January 7, 2016, on the first anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo attacks, at the Dweck Gallery in Jerusalem.
Lior Zaltzman is the Forward’s Digital Fellow and a wearer of many hats. When she’s not tweeting from the Forward’s account, she’s creating illustrations, graphics and lists for the various Forward blogs. She can also make comics out of your bad dates in #OYDATE. She graduated from the School of Visual Arts with a BFA in cartooning. Lior Zaltzman can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on twitter @liorca.