Sukkot Art by Arza Somekh

This work by Somekh is titled The Union of the Four Species.  

For the Jewish Sukkot holiday four species of plants are selected:
One with taste and with odor-Atrog (cirron),
One with taste and odorless- Lulav (palm branch),
One with odor but tasteless- Hadas (myrtle),
One odorless and tasteless- Arava(willow).

According to one of the explanations the four species represent four types of persons who become united under the Sukkah. The holiday starts this year on Wednesday night October 8th.

A Prayer for Peace

Sukkot Exhibit with Andi Arnovitz, Ken Goldman, Yoram Raanan, and Ruth Schreiber.

Sunday October 12 & Monday October 13, 4-9

Ahim Hasid Complex
45 Emek Refraim, German Colony, Jerusalem.

Organized by Kol HaOt.

Guided tours of the art exhibit.
          • Special interactive, hands-on workshops on "Peace"
          • Musical performances 
          • Bibliodrama
Co-sponsored with The Jerusalem Biennale for Contemporary Jewish Art.

Yom Kippur Art by Arza Somekh

Yom Kippur, also known as Day of Atonement, is the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people. Its central themes are atonement and repentance. This year it it takes place Friday night October 3rd and finishes sundown the next day.

Ten days of Penance by Italian artist Azra Somekh reflects on the ten days that pass between the Jewish New Year and the end of Yom Kippur. During these days an individual should examine him/herself and use this opportunity to correct mistakes before the judgment on the last day. According to the artist after ten days the penitent is in front of a ladder; he/she can remain at the same spiritual level, go up or go down.

Crown Heights’ Community Art Show

4th Annual Celebration of Creativity  

As the Holiday of Sukkot approaches the Creative Soul will host it’s annual community art exhibition. Unlike in previous years, the event will take place in the Creative Soul’s own space - the gallery at 386 Kingston Ave in the heart of Chassidic Brooklyn.
The exhibit starts Sunday October 12 at 8pm with an artist reception open to the whole community.

Making/History: Reconstructing the Gwoździec Synagogue

At YIVO, New York, on Sunday, October 12, 6:30pm: a first behind-the-scenes look at the reconstruction of the roof and ceiling of a 200-year old synagogue as part of the new core exhibition at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews. 

After years of research, an international team of 296 historians, architects, artisans, students and artists specializing in traditional woodwork and polychrome painting reconstructed the Gwoździec roof and ceiling, conducting educational workshops in the synagogues of eight Polish cities along the way.

Artists’ Sukkah in New Haven

The Connecticut Artists' Beit Midrash is building a collaborative Artist’s Sukkah for New Haven's City Wide Open Studios (a sukkah is a temporary outdoor hut built for the Jewish holiday of Sukkot). It will be open for viewing during the Alternative Space Weekend. On Sunday, October 12 there will be nosh, crafts, and an opportunity to meet some of the artists. One of the themes of this sukkah is "transported nature," so feel free to bring any of your own plant cuttings to add to the sukkah.

The Goffe Street Armory, 290 Goffe Street, New Haven, CT
Sunday, October 12, 12-6 PM: art, nosh and conversation

Jewish Enviro-Artists Have the Whole World in Their Hands

... Mierle Laderman Ukeles was responding to the environment through her art way before the term “global warming” or “climate change” or “extreme weather” had any currency. But she is not alone. Artists such as Helene Aylon, Alan Sonfist, Jackie Brookner, Linda Weintraub, Shai Zakai, and the seminal eco-artists Helen and Newton Harrison paved the way for all sorts of creators to make environmental topics accessible to the public...

... Founded in 2010 by Patricia Eszter Margit, Art Kibbutz, an international Jewish artists’ colony that held its first pilot residency in Upstate New York, brings together artists to explore their Jewish heritage, while providing space to collaborate and create. “In Western civilization, art and culture are viewed as above nature,” Margit said. “But as Jews, ultimately we are partners in creation and so we have to approach the natural world not as a dominating figure, but in a gentle, loving feminine way that inspires others.”...

Read more about our members (in bold) in the full article in The Forward here.

Helene Aylon's Honey and Apple Plate

Tonight starts Rosh HaShanah, the Jewish new year.

Apples and honey are traditionally eaten on Rosh Hashanah to symbolize a sweet new year. Helène Aylon created this plate for a fund-raiser to combat domestic violence, employing a verse from Genesis describing Eve’s punishment for eating the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. The inscription compels the viewer to remember the eternal problem of violence against women, even at a festive time.

Honey and Apple Plate

Helène Aylon, 2004
Ceramic: hand painted and glazed
Diameter: 11 5/8 in. (29.5 cm) Height: 1 1/8 in. (2.9 cm)
Collection The Jewish Museum, New York

Food, Family and Feelings in The Book of Sarah

The visual autobiography of Sarah Lightman will be exhibited in cooperation with the 37th Annual Literary Festival: “The Hungry Heart is Telling You”. The Book of Sarah is an autobiographical text/image project.

Baron & Ellin Gordon Art Galleries - Lobby
Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia
Gallery hours: Tuesday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 – 5 p.m. (the Galleries are closed on Mondays). Info on the exhibit here.

Lightman is a guest speaker on Tuesday October 7th at 4pm at
The Hungry Heart Is Telling You, the 37th Annual Literary Festival in Virginia,
October 6-10, 2014

Artists Beit Midrash starts in Seattle

Image: Nancy Current
Jewish Art Salon member Nancy Current is starting an Artists Beit Midrash class this Fall in Seattle, WA. The 8-week session runs Wednesday evenings from 7-8.30pm22 October through 17 December 2014.

Theme: The Genesis of Creativity: Using Visual Midrash to Capture the Jewish Imagination

Facilitators: Jeremy Alk & Nancy Current.

Graphic Details: Confessional Comics by Jewish Women

Graphic Details is a groundbreaking touring exhibition providing the first in-depth look at a unique and prolific niche of graphic storytelling – Jewish women’s autobiographical comics. It is curated by Sarah Lightman and Michael Kaminer.

Space Station Sixty-Five 
Building One, 373 Kennington Road, London SE11 4PS
23 September to 13 December 2014

While the influential role of Jews in cartooning has long been acknowledged, the role of Jewish women in shaping the medium is largely unexplored. This exhibition of original drawings, full comic books and graphic novels presents the powerful work of eighteen U.S., Canadian, and international artists whose intimate, confessional work has influenced the world of comics over the last four decades, creating an entirely new genre.

Blue Like Me: The Art of Siona Benjamin

September 18, 2014—December 19, 2014
Opening Reception September 18, 6—8 pm

The Gallery at the Gershman Y, 401 South Broad Street (at Pine) Philadelphia, PA 19147 215-545-4400 ·

Along with an exhibition of some of Siona Benjamin's recent work, the Gershman will be presenting a lecture by the artist, an interdisciplinary Indian dance performance by Rang de Nila in collaboration with Benjamin and inspired by her paintings, and a preview of a documentary film about the artist.

Threads That Bind: A Cultural Identity

American Jewish University
, Platt Borstein Galleries
15600 Mulholland Drive, Bel Air, CA 90077
September 7 - December 21, 2014

ARTISTS: Andi Arnovitz, Vicki Reikes Fox, Naomi Wanjiku Gakunga, Connie Rohman, Gwen Samuels.  

Opening Reception: Sunday September 21
3:00 - 5:00p.m.

And all the skilled workers spun with their own hands, and they brought what they had spun in blue, purple and crimson yarns and in fine linen.
Exodus 35:25

Spiritual Defense - Exploring the power of Mitzvot and positive action in the defense of Israel.

David Orlansky
Israel 3
Creative Soul Gallery
386 Kingston Ave, Brooklyn, NY
Opening Reception Monday, September 8 at 8pm 

Gallery hours: September 8 - October 5, Sunday – Thursday 10 – 3:30.

Curators: Rabbi Yitzchok Moully for The Creative Soul, and Elyssa Wortzman for the Jewish Art Salon.

As the war raged on in Gaza this summer many Jews from around the world asked themselves ‘what can I do to help people in the Land of Israel’. There was an outpouring of love and support from many with demonstrations, food drives for the IDF, donations and much more. In addition to the need of the IDF to do its job keeping the people safe, what else can we do?

Miriam Stern in Shma Journal's First Encounters

September's issue of Shma features essays and art based on first encounters with God, doubt, death, and ritual.

According to Miriam Stern, who answered our call for art, Rosh Hashanah celebrates God’s creation of the world we live in. Taking imagery from her photographs and combining them with previous paintings and prints she manipulates and transforms them on her iPad. The Shma images represent the birth of the universe. More info on her work here.

Screening: All This Has Come Upon Us

Filmmaker Peter Sis with Mark Podwal (R)
Eldridge Street Synagogue, 12 Eldridge Street, New York, NY 10002
Tuesday Oct. 7 at 7 PM

Czech Television’s second documentary film on artist Mark Podwal offers a portrait of the creative process behind his recent Terezin Ghetto Museum exhibition. Each artwork resembles a book’s pages on which the tragedies pictured are paired with biblical verses from Psalms. Filmed in Prague, Terezin, Auschwitz, Krakow and in New York at the Eldridge Street Synagogue, the documentary includes interviews with leading personalities discussing Podwal’s art.

The artist will be present to answer questions. Event is free. RSVP here.

Siona Benjamin in AMEN: A Prayer for the World

Washington National Cathedral partners with caravan for the U.S. premiere of an interfaith arts exhibit designed to build bridges of respect, understanding, and sharing between the creeds and cultures of the East and West.
Siona Benjamin will exhibit Shekinim, painted fiber glass and mixed media, 2014.
AMEN: A Prayer for the World seeks to express a deep, fundamental acknowledgment of both power and hope for all people. The participating artists each decorated one of the life-sized fiberglass sculptures. Thirty figures painted by Egyptian artists were previously on display in Cairo. These figures join 18 figures painted by Western artists for a joint exhibition at Washington National Cathedral; all 48 figures then continue to St. John the Divine.

Rosh HaShanah by Leah Caroline

Rosh Hashanah (literally "head [of] the year") is the Jewish New Year. The Biblical name for this holiday is called Yom Teruah or the Feast of Trumpets, not Rosh Hashanah. It is a two-day celebration, which begins this year on September 24th at sundown.

The shofar is traditionally blown each morning for the entire month of Elul, the month preceding Rosh Hashanah. The sound of the shofar is intended to awaken the listeners from their "slumbers" and alert them to the coming judgment. The total number of blasts on Rosh Hashanah is 100.

Leah Caroline's art incorporates the shofar and religious texts.

Archie Rand: Psalm 68 at the Derfner Museum

Reception and artist’s talk Sunday, Sept. 21, from 3:30-5:00 p.m. in the Derfner Judaica Museum, 5901 Palisade Avenue, Riverdale, NY. R.S.V.P. (718) 581-1596 or The exhibition will remain on view through January 4, 2015.

A Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, Archie Rand (b. 1949), the Presidential Professor of Art at Brooklyn College, has had more than 100 individual exhibitions. In Psalm 68, he uses abstract iconography to explore one of the oldest extant Hebrew poems and its compelling, if elusive, narrative.

Huffington Post features Richard McBee & Yona Verwer

Religion Is Alive and Well in Contemporary Art

Huffington Post, August 18, 2014 

Yona Verwer
Visiting Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Hamilton College

On a breezy summer day, I joined a group of artists and writers in the basement of the Liberty Bar in midtown Manhattan to discuss the many places religious life meets the visual arts. The meeting took place under the auspices of the Society for the Arts, Religion, and Contemporary Culture, founded in the 1960s by theologian Paul Tillich and Alfred H. Barr, Jr, the first director of the Museum of Modern Art in NYC. Erling Hope organized the event. Contrary to the shortsighted views of secular art critics, one thing is clear: religion is alive and well in contemporary art.
Artists are toying with and tweaking rituals until they become relevant again to a new age. Article continues here
View McBee's and Verwer's work in the accompanying slide show.

Sh'ma Journal features Yehudis Barmatz

Forest of Bondage
The Sh'ma Journal, an "independent think tank" of Jewish ideas features images this month on the topic of "seeking". These works by Israeli artist Yehudis Barmatz-Harris reflect her philosophy and approach to the arts; her belief in the creative arts process as providing confidence, healing, soul searching and reflection. See the online gallery here.

Andi Arnovitz's Many International Exhibits

Arnovitz is one of ten international finalists:
Philadelphia's Print Center’s 88th Annual International Competition features works by 39 of the finest contemporary artists working today. This year the competition was juried by Julia Dolan, Minor White Curator of Photography, and Bruce Guenther, Chief Curator, Mercedes Eichholz Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, both of the Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR. The Print Center’s Annual International Competition is one of the most prestigious and oldest juried exhibitions in the United States. The Print Center 

“Echoes of the Borscht Belt” by Marisa Scheinfeld

Opening September 10th New York's Yeshiva University Museum will present Marisa Scheinfeld’s haunting photos of abandoned sites where Borscht Belt resorts once boomed in the Catskill Mountain region of upstate New York.

“Echoes of the Borscht Belt” assembles images Scheinfeld has shot inside and outside structures that once buzzed with life as summer havens for generations of New York Jews.

Scheinfeld, who grew up in the region, began her documentary photo project in 2009; this exhibition marks the first time audiences can see her work on the large scale for which it was conceived. 

Ruth Schreiber's European Day of Jewish Culture

Schreiber is participating in the exhibition “Hear O Israel” in the Omero Museum, Alcona, Italy, as part of the European Day of Jewish Culture 2014, running from Sept 14th-28th.
She is showing her hand-built porcelain work “Love Letter”, accompanied by a YouTube video

She is also the featured artist at the European Day of Jewish Culture exhibition called “Women in Judaism” running September 14th-28th at Attenweiler, Germany.
Schreiber is showing bronzes and other sculptures, and also her photograph “Pregnancy Diptych”.

"Dialogs with Great Photographers" with Neil Folberg

The twelfth edition to the continuing series is a conversation with Neil Folberg. The photographer is renowned for his challenging bodies of work such as "Celestial Nights: Visions of an Ancient Land" depicting earthly elements mirrored by the heavenly sky as well as the series "Travels with Van Gogh and the Impressionists" which is a contemporary photographic take on Impressionist paintings. Folberg discusses these series and reflects on various topics including his early studies with Ansel Adams and the role of Israel in his work and life.

Sara Tasini has conducted a series of informal talks with great contemporary photographers such as John Dugdale, Sandy Skoglund & Flor Garduno. Photographers' motivations and personal insights are enlightening! Click here for access to the whole series. Click here for Folberg.

Carole P. Kunstadt’s ‘Between the Lines’

Clare Gallery at the Franciscan Center for Urban Ministry and the Charter Oak Cultural Center present Between The Lines: Works by Carole P. Kunstadt, an exhibition of works by the New York artist, B.F.A., Hartford Art School. The partnership presents two exhibitions from September to December, 2014, providing a survey of the artist’s past and current work.
The first takes place Sept. 8 through Oct. 10 at Charter Oak Cultural Center.  It showcases works from Kunstadt’s Sacred Poems Series and Markings Series. The opening reception is 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11. On Wednesday, Oct. 1, noon to 1 p.m., Kunstadt will discuss her work, describing her materials and concepts.

Kunstadt’s works reference the material of books, deconstructing paper and text, and using it in metaphorical ways. Her devotion to books is inspired by the ability of the written word to take the reader to other places through stories, poems, and prayers. 

Boris Lurie No!Art 2014

The Boris Lurie Foundation is exhibiting KZ Kampf Kunst at the former Gestapo Headquarters in Cologne, Germany.
August 29 - Nov 2, 2014.
NS-Dokumentationszentrum der Stadt Köln.
Appellhofplatz 23-25, 50667 Köln, Germany.
Phone: 0221 2212 6332

A historical retrospective of Boris Lurie works at the most poignant and terrifying setting imaginable: the former headquarters of the Gestapo in Cologne (currently a National Socialism Documentation Center).

More info here.

The Jewish Waltz with Planet Earth - Exhibit at Governor's Island

This Jewish Environmental Land Art Exhibit by Art Kibbutz takes place the first 2 weeks of August 2014.

Exhibition opening: Sunday, August 3 at 3pm.

Governor’s Island, NY. Colonel’s Row - Building 407-A.

Opening words: Nigel Savage, Hazon; Curator Yona Verwer, Art Kibbutz.

Exhibition Hours: August 1 - 15, 2014, 12 - 5 pm daily.

Image: Eden Forest © 2013-2014 Cynthia Beth Rubin

Art Kibbutz’s select group of artists give collaborative and creative Jewish responses to food security, farming, and sustainable development. They spent a month creating works inspired by nature and our rich heritage. 

The exhibition also shows how this revolutionary, unprecedented project, was a living model of a thriving, inspired, sustainable Jewish artistic community, grounded in social responsibility and the Jewish heritage. 
Participating artists: Asherah Cinnamon, Nikki Green (Australia), Carol Phillips, Emmett Leader, Cynthia Beth Rubin, Elyssa Wortzman, Deborah Margo and Devora Newmark (Canada), Paul Solomon. Artist residency by Leah Caroline.
Curator: Yona Verwer. (Bold names are Jewish Art Salon members).

Apply Now for Jewish Artist Residency at Governor's Island, NY

Art Kibbutz Residency
Governor's Island at Colonel's Row, Building 406A
August 1 - 15, 2014
* Applications OPEN
Art Kibbutz is bringing Jewish art to Governor's Island, one of NYC's hottest art spots. Opportunity for a small group of artists to work together in community and include the general public in the project.

There are still a few spots left in this summer residency. While the first floor of the building will be used as a gallery space, they are offering rooms on the 2nd floor and 3rd floor as work space (not living space). 

More info here.

Blue Like Me: The Art of Siona Benjamin

This documentary-in-progress by Hal Rifken will be completed soon. 

It portrays Siona's life, her diverse cultural experiences growing up as a Jew in India, and her Fulbright project titled Faces: Weaving Indian Jewish Narratives.

The public is invited to an event at the Indian Consulate in New York on July 23rd

Two calls for art images - "Seeking" and "Hayom harat ha-olam"

A national Jewish art publication seeks images for its online gallery for the August & September issues. 

 artists who applied for membership in the Jewish Art Salon 
I. August issue 

Theme: artwork about the relationship between questions and liturgy/theology, or the role of seeking in Judaism. 

You will be mentioned with a paragraph about your work and a link to your website.

Sh'ma Issue on Trafficking features Dorit Jordan Dotan

       Trafficking Is a Jewish Concern

First published in October 2008, Sh'ma is re-purposing this Sh'ma issue on trafficking because the problem—the coerced movement and labor of women, children, and men worldwide—continues to grow. 

Trafficking and Forced Prostitution of Women in Israel 
This month's issue features the art of Dorit Jordan Dotan here. In 2007, Dotan accompanied Rita Chaiken, Anti-Traffiking Project Coordinator for Isha L’Isha – Haifa Feminist Center, to search where trafficked women were held, and where they were forced to work as prostitutes.  The vast majority of women were trafficked from Eastern Europe (Moldavia, Russia, Ukraine, etc.).

Arie Galles' Fourteen Stations

Arie Galles - Babi Yar
Charcoal and white Conté.
“Fourteen Stations/Hey Yud Dalet”, a suite of Holocaust drawings by Arie Galles, refers to the "Fourteen Stations of the Cross", and to the fact that each concentration camp was established near a railroad station. 

The series is on exhibit till the end of August at the Stefan Szydlowski Gallery, Warsaw, Poland.

The Hebrew title "Hey Yud Dalet," the acronym of "Hashem Yinkom Damam," “May God avenge their blood,” has been carved into the gravestones of Jewish martyrs throughout the centuries. Within each drawing Galles hand lettered and embedded one fourteenth of the Kaddish. Interwoven into the texture of each drawing, these Aramaic and Hebrew phrases are invisible. The full suite of drawings completes the Kaddish, offering the prayer for those who perished and had no family to recite it for them.  
View the work here.

Mark Podwal's Terezin Exhibit Review

Mark Podwal - The Holy City 1099
“All This Has Come Upon Us…” Mark Podwal at the Terezin Ghetto Museum
Sanctuary is a place of refuge, solace and protection that easily functions as a mental as well as physical state. Mark Podwal’s ( latest series of artworks provides a kind of summation of a lifetime of mournful contemplation of Jewish history; a chilling chronicle of Jewish misfortune tempered by the balm of the Book of Psalms and his elegant artworks. The timing of the release of these works surely reflects the growing apprehension that the world is growing more dangerous for the Jewish state and especially urgent for the threatened European Jewish communities. History has seldom been so relevant. 

Article continues here

Call for NYC artist with large studio

For our events for COJECO's CWW programs the Jewish Art Salon is looking to hire a NYC artist for a 2-hour event in September or October.
  • Artist needs to have a studio space that accommodates 20 visitors. We can rent additional chairs if needed.
  • Studio located preferably in Manhattan, or easy subway access in Brooklyn, close to Manhattan.
  • The artist will give a brief tour of his/her artwork, followed by a lecture and hands-on workshop.
  • The lecture and workshop need to have a Jewish component. The nature of the lecture will be decided in conjunction with our co-organizers RJeneration.
  • Event will take place on a weeknight (Monday - Thursday, approx.6-8 PM; studio needs to be available from 5-9PM).

Call for Art Images - Trafficking

For a national Jewish art publication's online gallery, July issue. 

Theme: artwork that has to do with human trafficking. 
You will be mentioned with a paragraph about your work and a link to your website.
Deadline: June 21

Shma Journal's Jewish Neighborhoods features Ben Schachter & Dorit Jordan Dotan

Ben Schachter - Sidney Eruv
June's issue of the Sh'ma Journal is about the role neighborhoods have played and may still play in our lives. Are certain features — the sense of being known in one's neighborhood — disappearing? Or, do we now understand the constructs of neighborhood differently? What roles do virtual communities play, and what will be their resonance and staying power? How might we create shared histories and connections that transcend geography? 

This issue features theme-related art by Jewish Art Salon members Ben Schachter and Dorit Jordan Dotan. 

More about Schachter's work about the eruv in Sh'ma here and Dotan's about Haifa's Wadi Salib neighborhood here.

Dorit Jordan Dotan

2014 Skirball Artists' Beit Midrash Exhibit

The Skirball Center at Temple Emanu-el, 1 East 65th St., NYC

Transformations, an exhibition showcasing the works of 20 Jewish visual artists opens on Monday, June 16th at 6pm in the gallery space at Temple Emanu-El on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.  The show is the culmination of a year-long program during which the artists studied Torah together and made art inspired by Jewish sources under the aegis of the Skirball Center for Adult Jewish Learning. 

A number of the participants in this Visual Artists Beit Midrash are well known in Jewish art circles, having shown their work in Jewish museums in the NYC area and around the country.  

Artist Q, Artist A: Yona Verwer Talks to Mirta Kupferminc

Zeek Magazine, May 31, 2014

Artist Q, Artist A is Zeek’s new series of artist-artist conversations.
Argentina-born Mirta Kupferminc is an award-winning artist living in Buenos Aires. A daughter of Auschwitz survivors, she focuses her art on memory, identity, migrations, and human rights. She is a member of the Jewish Art Salon, and the first ever international fellow at LABA’s House of Study in New York City.
At the 14 St Y she’s also exhibiting an artist book from “Mothers in the Bible Talk to Wichi Mothers,” a Schusterman Make It Happen project, created as part of a cultural exchange arranged for this project between Jewish ORT students and a mother from an Argentine Wichi tribe, an indigenous matriarchal people. 
Verwer & Kupferminc discuss Jewish art in South America, LABA: House of Study Fellowship, Jewish writers’ palms of hands, crossed by their own texts. Read interview here.

Artists Beit Midrash starting in Chicago

What is the Artists' Beit Midrash?
An opportunity to study Jewish sacred texts as a springboard to artistic creation.
Community of artists who find inspiration in their heritage. A non-denominational study/creative group. A supportive critique environment for feedback about your work. A spur to create, culminating in a group exhibition.
Facilitators: Jane Shapiro and Judith Joseph
This model of study/art critique was started in New York by artist Tobi Kahn. It has generated groups in New Jersey, Seattle and Connecticut, and the New York group partially inspired the creation of the Jewish Art Salon. It gives artists an environment to explore their Jewish heritage creatively while being enriched educationally.