When Belgian artist Jean Berame came to Sinai in 1980, the theme song for the work he did here might have been "Don't it make your brown rocks blue." Armed with ten tons of UN-blue paint, making enormous brown boulders blue (the color of peace) was exactly what Berame did. The result is an extraordinary installation between St. Catherine and Dahab in which the artist has used the landscape of Sinai -- once a battleground in the 1967 war between Egypt and Israel -- as a canvas to honor the realization of peace between the two nations.
The Blue Desert, however, transcends its functionality as a peace monument. The four miles of painted stones, some of which rise to heights of over 30 feet, is a vision in which Berame has used color to successfully alter the substance of the rocks. At times they appear more like giant balloons, or great gobs of cast-out chewing gum. The stones contrast vividly with the reds, browns, and yellows of the desert, and masterfully compliment Sinai's deep-blue sky.
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