Jerusalem Prepares for First-Ever Biennale

Exhibition Pushes Boundaries of Jewish Art Into the Avant-Garde

Andi Arnovitz’s beads, on view in Jerusalem, encapsulate her worries as well as a series of worries, in Hebrew, taken from morning prayers and the Talmud.
haaretz
Andi Arnovitz’s beads, on view in Jerusalem, encapsulate her worries as well as a series of worries, in Hebrew, taken from morning prayers and the Talmud.

By Haaretz/Danna Harman

Published September 15, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Jewish art is not hip. It can be beautiful, sure. It can be meaningful, of course. It can be valuable, no doubt. But cutting-edge? Current? Cool? Meh.

If you believe that, you clearly have not yet been to the first-ever Jerusalem Biennale for Contemporary Jewish Art, which opened this week at five venues around town, with the participation of more than 50 artists showcasing a panoply of visions of what contemporary Jewish art can be.

“Don’t get me wrong,” begins Ram Ozeri, the 33-year-old mastermind behind the biennale and one of its seven curators. “It’s not that I don’t love menorahs or Torah scrolls,” he says, referring to the kinds of images that, along with pomegranates, dancing Hasids and the walls of Jerusalem, often come to mind – and with good reason – when the words “Jewish” and “art” combine.

“But this is something different.”

Take the work of Kansas City, Missouri-born Andi Arnovitz, 54, a firecracker of a former graphic designer, who moved to Israel with her high-tech wunderkind of a husband and five children – becoming religious along the way – 14 years ago.

Her two works, created specially for the biennale, challenge assumptions of what Jewish art is and can be – but do so by focusing on that quintessential of all Jewish themes: worrying.

“What do I worry about? Oh, everything,” she says simply.

Read more at Haaretz.com.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.