Arts & Culture


‘Beyond Insane’ Biblical Paintings

By Menachem Wecker

My artist friends think I’m crazy,” said Archie Rand, who is the first to admit that his newest project is “beyond insane.”Indeed, Rand’s series is arguably the most ambitious Jewish art enterprise, perhaps ever: 613 canvases, one per commandment. Surrounded by stacks upon stacks of paintings in his studio, Rand is easy to compare toRead More


Two Books for the Price of One

By Paul Zakrzewski

Lipshitz Six, or Two Angry Blondes By T Cooper Dutton, 416 pages, $24.95. * * *Things are not what always what they seem in the world of T Cooper. To begin with, there is the title of her second novel, “Lipshitz Six, or Two Angry Blondes.” This sort of giddy riffing, where subsequent clauses are meant to modify the first one to ironicRead More


Searching for Answers, After the Fire

By Mark Oppenheimer

Triangle By Katharine Weber Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 256 pages, $23. * * *‘Triangle” is a prose cousin of certain one-act plays, those taut dramatic exercises in which just a few characters, engaging in conversation, conjure grand notions. (Think of “No Exit,” “Waiting for Godot,” “Doubt.”) At its best, Katharine Weber’sRead More


A Very Special Episode: ‘Everwood’ Series Finale Has the Rite Stuff

By Victor Wishna

The fictional television town of Everwood, Colo., has no synagogue and no rabbi, not even a fictional one. Its leading citizen is played by the palpably WASPy Treat Williams, and its network — The WB — gave birth to “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Beauty and the Geek.” So it might be the last place, even on television, that you wouldRead More


Good Guys and Bad Guys

By Amos Oz

Who are the good guys? That’s what every well-meaning European, left-wing European, intellectual European, liberal European always wants to know, first and foremost. Who are the good guys in the film and who are the bad guys. In this respect Vietnam was easy: The Vietnamese people were the victims, and the Americans were the bad guys. The sameRead More


The Enduring Power of ‘Education’

By Avi Shafran

My 13-year-old son, Menachem, is my valued chavruta, or study partner; he has a keen and creative mind, and I hope he will one day become a true talmid chochom, or religious scholar. We study Talmud together every evening and Sabbath; Menachem’s mornings at yeshiva are also filled with the study of religious texts.But he knows how toRead More


Returning to Bethlehem

By B.B. Royvensteyn

THE BOOK OF RUTH IS READ ON SHAVUOT ‘We should never have left Bethlehem,” the older woman was saying. “It was bad enough when Elimelech died; what a shock to my system. I blame him for what happened to my boys. Not to mention, there was this parcel of land….”“Your boys…,” Ruth thought sadly. The sentence began but, like so manyRead More


Festival Of Arts New York

By Sarah Kricheff

It’s that time of year again. After six months of pondering, exploring and expressing the theme of “wandering,” the 27 members of Makor’s Artists-in-Residence program have created works that will be presented in the seventh Biannual Makor Marathon. As the event is a multimedia, multidisciplinary festival of visual andRead More


An American Look

By Sarah Kricheff

Styles, themes and subjects of American art created in the first half of the 20th century are examined in a traveling exhibition, My America: Art From the Jewish Museum Collection, 1900-1955. Originally organized by the Jewish Museum, New York, the show makes its way to the Bay Area, where it will be presented at the Judah L. Magnes Museum. WithRead More


Our Own Superhero: A Matter of Pryde

By Michael Green

Bar mitzvah boys can be divided, if you crunch the dataset right, into two groups: those who wished over their bar mitzvah cakes for superpowers, and those who wished to meet their favorite girl with superpowers: Kitty Pryde.Granted this might be limited to the subset of bar mitzvah boys who know what a dataset is, but everyone I knew fell madlyRead More





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