Forever a Jerusalemite

Photographer Orna Naor finds small, personal vignettes that make up the larger story of Jerusalem.

This week was Jerusalem Day, celebrating the city’s 1967 reunification and eliciting, as always, controversy. This is nothing new – Jerusalem has long been accused of being at once both sacred and profane.

Photographer Orna Naor, who grew up in Jerusalem, is familiar with this city of contrasts. Despite having moved to Israel’s center region three decades ago, in her heart, she says, she is still a Jerusalemite. Wandering with her camera  through the various neighborhoods, she finds small, personal vignettes that are part of a larger story.

Women of fashion and women of the cloth…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_6

Sacred spaces in common areas…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_5

Generations of Old City residents watching the procession go by…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_2

Elders passing traditions on to sons and grandsons…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_4

Like the Orthodox Christian ceremony of the Holy Fire at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_8

While outside the Church, a different kind of fire can take hold…

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_7

Who said only Tel Avivians live in a bubble?

Orna-Naor_Jerusalem_1

Several of Naor’s photos have been submitted to the World Street Photography competition; readers are invited to visit her page and vote for their favorites. More fascinating images can be seen on her Facebook page — and check out her photo essay about the Yom Kippur Kapparot ritual.

About Rachel Neiman

A veteran media professional who has lived in Israel since 1984, Rachel has been part of the ISRAEL21c organization since 2008. Prior to that, she served as managing editor of Globes Online, the English-language edition of Israel’s leading business daily, and before that, at The Jerusalem Post, as a business reporter, feature writer, and consumer columnist. Rachel began writing about Israeli technology companies at LINK Israel’s Business and Technology Magazine and is a professional Hebrew to English translator. In her spare time, she is an active member of the Havurat Tel Aviv congregation, and the Holyland Hash House Harriers, part of an international running and drinking disorganization.