White Elephant

White Elephant | Premiere: 2012, Israel Museum, Jerusalem

The term “White Elephant” refers to a spectacular item of royal power and priceless value, but in reality the sanctity attributed to the white elephant proves a vexatious and unprofitable burden.

The source of the expression comes from the eastern Asia, where white elephants used to be considered sacred. When the king of Thailand wanted to take revenge on a nobleman, he gifted him a white elephant. The nobleman was forced to build the elephant a special home, to feed it with special delicacies and allow worshipers access to it. He was also not allowed to ever get rid of the elephant. Over the years, the expenses would drain the man of all his possessions.

In this site specific performance, the audience inflates a huge elephant-shaped balloon under the supervision of a pair of charlatans. They attempt to tame it for a proud and upright stance, while air continues to escape from its many punctures.

The performance is suitable for all ages.

Created and performed by: Daniel Pakes, Amit Bar-Am | Artistic direction: Idit Herman | Design: Dmitry Tyulpanov