Between January and July 2017, Franco-Palestinian photographer Taysir Batniji (b. 1966, Palestine) shared the everyday life of his ‘American cousins’ who have lived in California and Florida for several decades. Whilst staying in their homes, he looked to understand them through the spaces in which they live and the objects that belong to them, photographing his cousins and recording their stories. At the same time, he plunged into his own memories, drawing his family home in Gaza from memory. This collection of works, on view in the exhibition and the accompanying publication, raises various fascinating questions. What does it mean to share a history? How do our relationship to the past and our sense of belonging change when we choose a new home, a new life? With this project, Taysir Batniji, who has lived in France since 1995, was able to extend the exploration of geographic and cultural in-betweens that lies at the heart of his practice.
Through Immersion, an annual programme of joint residencies, exhibitions and publications dedicated to photographers, the Fondation d’entreprise Hermès supports contemporary photography by facilitating the creation, exhibition and publication of new work. The alternating programme is open to photographers based in France, who are mentored by a French professional as they create original work in the United States, and the following year supports a photographer based in the United States, mentored by an anglophone professional as they pursue an original work in France.