Photo Credit: Courtesy Foreign Affairs and Media
An artist's rendering of the puzzles made up of yoga mats

Lotus pose, Sun salutation or a meditation pose. Which postures would you prefer to practice with the backdrop of Jerusalem’s Old City walls?

On Thursday, Jerusalem residents gathered in the Valley of Ben-Hinnom to participate in collective yoga, meditation, and dance to celebrate International Yoga Day in Jerusalem. Participants will practice yoga on 701 yoga mattresses that will puzzle together an art piece called the “The Big Dream – Jerusalem 2048″.

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Sharonna Karni Cohen, Founder of dreame.me, said: “We asked the public; many of whom are from Jerusalem – what do you imagine you will see when you look outside your window in 30 years?”

An artist’s rendering of the puzzles made up of yoga mats / Photo credit: Courtesy Foreign Affairs and Media

She contacted Amit Trainin, a local artist and professor at Bezalel and Mensher, to take inspiration from the hundreds of answers to create a single artwork interpreting the envisioned future of Jerusalem. She then graphically sliced the artwork into hundreds of pieces, which were numbered and printed on yoga mats.

Sharonna explains: “The Big Dream is about turning our ideas into a powerful visual reminder of what we want to achieve on a personal and collective level. Through yoga, we find the balance between dreams and reality. At the end of the event, participants will be able to take a piece of our collective dream for Jerusalem, one of the most spiritual cities in the world, home with them.”

An artist’s rendering of the puzzles made up of yoga mats / Photo credit: Courtesy Foreign Affairs and Media

The event was produced in partnership with the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, the Jerusalem Municipality, the Jerusalem Development Authority and the Schusterman Foundation. In addition, Cathay Pacific, one of the world’s leading airlines, who last year opened a direct line between Israel and Hong Kong, flew the yoga mats in for the event.

Eyal Haimovsky, Director General of the Jerusalem Development Authority said: “As part of the development and accessibility of the Old City, the Jerusalem Development Authority is working to further develop Valley of Ben-Hinnom Park: alongside the park’s infrastructure work, we are advancing cultural and recreational activities for the benefit of the Jerusalem public. The International Yoga Day event showcases the popular yoga activities that takes place every Friday in the Valley of Hinnom, which has become a Jerusalem weekend tradition for residents of the city.”

An artist’s rendering of the puzzles made up of yoga mats / Photo credit: Courtesy Foreign Affairs and Media

“I congratulate the participants of the International Yoga day Festival in Jerusalem part of thousands of events taking place simultaneously in other cities around the world,” said Ariela Rejwan, Deputy Director General and Director of the Society Culture and Sports Culture at the Jerusalem Municipality. “This unique artistic project at Ben-Hinnom Valley in Jerusalem shows, with great talent, our residents’ dreams for the future of Jerusalem, the capital of Israel. It is not by accident that it is said of Jerusalem that it is a city that unites – my personal dream for Jerusalem is that we will continue to see connections between people, communities, cultures and dreams. May the dreams of all of us come true and may our city continues to grow and thrive.”

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