Friday, August 12, 2011

New Jewish Arts Show Opening Reception

This new exhibit, entitled "Hands, Hearts and the Sacred: The Judaic Art of Barbara Barron and Wendy A. Rabinowitz" features two nationally acclaimed Judaic artists.  Their works will be displayed along with both Jewish and Yiddish music and song presented by Arlene Symons at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts on Saturday, August 27th. 

Barbara Barron and Wendy A. Rabinowitz met in the summer of 2010 and felt an instant rapport and commonality in their lives and their artwork. The creation of sacred beauty (Hebrew: 'hiddur mitvah') impels these two artists to come together to remember, express and reconnect to their ancient Jewish heritage and beyond.  The exhibit will include ceremonial objects, collages, and assemblages that reflect the work of their hands, hearts and the sacred.

Barbara Barron

Barbara Barron describes her art form as being "a demanding, labor intensive and exciting form of artistic expression."  She specializes in Judaica and works with quilted machine applique using photo transfer techniques, hand dyed batiks, Dupioni silks and metallic threads.  She resides in East Otis, Massachusetts and Delray Beach, Florida and received her BA from Hunter College, her MA from Teacher's College at Columbia University, and studied fibre and ecclesiastical embroidery at Oxford University and the Royal School of Needlework in London, England. She operated Barron Designs, a fiber art gallery in Deer Park, NY for twenty-four years, creating commissioned wall hangings for commercial and residential interiors. Working in the tradition of her faith, she has created over fifty Judaic curtains, torah covers and wall hangings. Her torah cover won the prestigious Avis Lee & Abraham Neiman Judaica Prize Competition by the Jewish Museum of Florida in Miami Beach and was purchased for its permanent collection. In addition, Barbara has had numerous one-person and group exhibits though out the United States and Japan, including Pindar Gallery in Soho, NYC.  

Barbara Barron
Completed commission from May 2011 at the Congregation Ahavas Achim, Highland Park, NJ  93" x 35".

The Ten Commandments - Barbara Barron

 Come see why Hampshire Life describes Barbara Barron as the "Fiber Genius".

Wendy A. Rabinowitz

Wendy A. Rabinowitz believes: "All art is a healing, a 'tikun olam' to creation..." She uses this as a base for her work as a weaver/mixed-media artist who works out of her studio, Living Threads Judaica, in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.  She will be exhibiting work from her new series "Shattering of the Vessels, Gathering of the Sparks" which reflect concepts from the mystical threads of Judaism. Her one-of-a-kind Judaic artwork of silk, wool, metallic fibers and surface embellishment is included in home, synagogue, museum, organization and gallery collections though out the United States and Israel. Rabinowitz's creations combine her love of bold color, texture, and forms with her deep commitment to the environment, peace, healing and women's issues found in the Torah, Psalms and blessings. Her artwork was included in the "Miracles of Peace" exhibit at The United Nations; the Mayyim Hayyim Gallery in Newton, MA; and she recently had a solo exhibition at The Chabad Gallery in NYC.   She is included in the National Women's Museum in Washington, DC and was the recipient of the Anshe Chesed Purchase Prize Award. Her commissioned work includes a newly-finished Presentation Plaque for the outgoing president of  the international organization Hadassah; the Jewish Women's International Research Center at Brandeis University; Westchester Reform Temple, White Plains, NY; and The Jewish Center in Haifa, Israel. Born in Chicago, Ms. Rabinowitz studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and with Rabbis Zalman Schacter-Shalomi, Alan Berg, Gershon Winkler and Everett Gendler. Ms. Rabinowitz is dedicating her exhibit to the late Rabbi Jack Stern, who greatly admired and encouraged her work.  

  Wendy A. Rabinowtiz The Burning Bush; 24"H x 18"W x 3"D

"The intention is that my artworks will be a visual pathway of connection and spiritual renewal."
- Wendy A. Rabinowitz

Wendy A. Rabinowtiz What is Above, is Below; 42"H x 56"W x 8"D

"Every fiber of her [Wendy A. Rabinowitz's] weaving expresses the deepest understanding of the warp and woof of our religion and its ancient origins that have held our people together... her 'Living Threads' provide an instantaneous appreciation and deep respect for the many facets of Judaism and a neighborly appreciation for its deep-seated beliefs."
- Barbara Hirschl, owner, The Touchstone Gallery, NYC
Musician Arlene Symons has spent a lifetime both performing and teaching music. An accomplished classical pianist, she has performed extensively on radio and with orchestra halls in New York. She then turned to singing as well. Ms. Symons comes from a family of Yiddish theater entertainers and has a deep love and extensive repertoire of the music of her heritage, as well as folk music of other cultures. Arlene is the founder and director of Berkshire Chorus at Hevreh.

Hearts, Hands, and the Sacred kicks off with an opening reception at the Lichenstein Center for the Arts on Saturday, August 27th, 2011 from 3 to 5pm.  This event is free and open to the public. Come meet both the artists and enjoy their innovative work. The exhibition will run through Saturday, October 8th and the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts is open Wednesday-Saturday from noon to 5pm. For more information about Hands, Hearts, and the Sacred call the Lichtenstein Center at 413-499-9348.


Hands, Hearts and the Sacred
August 27th- October 8th
Opening Reception: Saturday, August 27th 3pm-5pm
Gallery hours: Wed-Sat 12 noon-5pm
The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts
28 Renne Ave, Pittsfield, MA 01201

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