Monday, August 22, 2011

Reeh 5771: Blessings, Curses, Blessings

Thanks to The Clothed in the Lamb podcast for mentioning me and for sending listeners my way.  Please do visit Itunes and put in a review (a good one I hope) to help others find Torah Threads.  

The image below is based on this week's parasha.  Please read the artist's statement as it beautifully conveys a special part of the Torah portion.  

Andi Arnovitz, USA/Israel

Parshat Re'eh

Parshat Re'eh

Artist Statement

I have always loved this parsha because the fundamentals of the Jewish concept of tzedakah are carefully explained here. Although there are many blessings and curses given, as an artist searching for the most graphic statement in the parsha, I found the "If there shall be a destitute person among you, any of your brethren in any of your cities, in the land that Hashem your G-d gives you, you shall not harden your heart or close your hand against your destitute brother. Rather, you shall open your hand to him; you shall lend him his requirement, whatever is lacking to him."
In this piece I worked in layers, symbolizing the many layers of understanding and interpretation that exist in the Torah. I have used the image of the hamsa, so prevalent here in Jerusalem, to represent the hand open in giving. I have sewn them, but left the tops open so they could actually hold money. Hanging from these hands are all the categories of obligation to which an individual is required to give charity. (From the Kitzer Shuchan Aruch. These include the orphan and widow, the poor of Jerusalem, the captive and the schools. All require our attention.

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