Helène Aylon was raised in an orthodox Jewish home in Brooklyn, N.Y. As a teenager she married a rabbi and had two children. Then her world split apart. A widow at thirty, she broke free of tradition and pursued her passion for art. In the 1950’s she studied art with Ad Reinhardt at Brooklyn College. She had her first exhibition in 1970 at the Max Hutchinson Gallery in Soho and in the mid 70s she was represented by the Betty Parsos Gallery.
Aylon describes herself as “a visual, conceptual, installation performance artist and eco-feminist whose art has often focused on ‘rescuing’: The Body in the 70's, The Earth in the 80's, and God (G-D) in the 90's to the present.”
Her work has been exhibited around the world, including the Whitney Museum, The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), the Jewish Museum in New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco, The Aldrich Museum in Connecticut, the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, the Jewish Museums in Vienna and Frankfurt and at the 2004 Lodz International Biennale in Poland. In 2012 Aylon was part of a groundbreaking exhibit in Israel, called Matronita: Jewish Feminist Art, works by women who come from a traditional Jewish background. In recent years her art deals with ancient foremothers and “seeing myself as a future foremother.” Her memoir, Whatever is Contained Must be Released: My Jewish Orthodox Girlhood, My Life as a Feminist Artist was published in 2012 by the Feminist Press of the City University of New York.
For the exhibit, Helène Aylon is submitting her highly acclaimed works, The Last Supper-Names (It's the standard Last Supper but the names of Jesus and the disciples are in Hebrew) and The Last Supper-No Names (No Names refers to the female relatives who were not at the Seder).
Rod Borghese is an artist and Architect based in Ottawa, Canada. He is a distant descendent of the Renaissance Borghese banking family that accumulated a vast collection of Medieval and Renaissance artworks. Borghese paints landscapes and portraits in oil, watercolor, graphite and digital media. His artworks have been exhibited internationally including the National Gallery of Canada, The Museum of Civilization, The Canadian War Museum, The Smithsonian Institute, the Commission of Fine Arts in Washington DC, The American University in Rome, the Museum of Archaeology in St Bertrand, Lugdunum and Lyon in Southern France. His art has been influenced by the Canadian Group of Seven and Tom Thomson. As an architect Rod worked on the design of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian with lead architect Douglas Cardinal, who is known for “flowing architecture marked with smooth lines, influenced by his Aboriginal heritage as well as European expressionist architecture.” Rod also worked on several other high profile projects in Washington DC. His artworks are available through the Borghese Gallery in Ottawa, Canada. Borghese has submitted several new renditions of famous Renaissance paintings.
Darrell Urban Black is an American visual artist originally from Brooklyn, New York who now lives and works in Frankfurt, Germany. His artworks have been exhibited in museums and contemporary art centers in Cyprus, Argentina, France, the UK, USA, Japan, Greece, Switzerland, Denmark, Russia and Australia. In April 2001, he was nominated for the German government prize for promising young artists. For the exhibition entitled "The Zeppelin in Art, Design, and Advertisement", held between May 11 and July 30, 2000, Darrell created "The Invasion." In the nomination letter, he was cited for his exceptional abilities in various art works. Another piece of art, referenced in the letter, was titled The Cosmic Linen, executed with a unique glue and acrylic on linen technique. The image was described as "universally appealing and representing a topic which concerns all of us - the universe." Darrell has expressed his interest in the JewishJesus art exhibit with these words: "I feel any exhibit attempting to bridge the divide between Christians and Jews, is a noble effort worthy of attention by visual artists of both faiths. And since Christians, share so many similarities and history with Jews, we should use the universal language of creativity to help start a conversation between our two great people, in an attempt to foster positive dialogue and hopefully mutual consensus. For example, my artwork titled Guardian of the Crypt shows an eternal flame in the middle protecting a Jewish and Christian crypt, my other artwork titled The Prophecy, has an angel of God holding a book written in Hebraic. For the exhibit Darrell proposes “to create a crest or seal of two images that intertwine to combine the two religious faiths together with an inscription of peace and unity that is written both in Hebrew and Latin.”
Hugh Colmer a British artist, studied art at the London School of Printing. He put his own creative urge on the back burner and became the agent and producer of many great artists and photographers. His first artist was Nicola Simbari whose originality and commercial appeal brought his art to exhibitions in London and New York by the 1950s, solidifying his international reputation. Hugh introduced Jean-Paul Goude, the famous French graphic designer, illustrator, photographer and advertising film director, to the London fashion world in the 1960s. Soon after that Hugh came to New York and became the agent producer of Bert Stern in the 1970s when he returned to the U.S. to photograph portraits and fashion. Hugh was given an assignment at that time by Norton Simon's creative director William C. McCaffrey to consult with their client Halston to create an art collection with Andy Warhol, Robert Motherwell, Larry Rivers, Robert Rauschenberg and other pop artists. Since he retired from New York City with his wife Carol to their spiritual retreat center in Windham, New York, Hugh has made a study of comparative myth and religion. During the last five years he has published several art books on the subject including: It's a Pagan World, De Coding Dragon Lore through Astrology and the Tarot, The Gods were Dinosaurs, and The Ultimate Multiverse Tarot. Like Simbari, Hugh is a semi-abstract impressionist. Using stunning colors and favoring brilliant tones, He paints with a palette knife and his paintings are full of light and energy. These paintings are used as color healing therapy and will be on permanent display in the Temple of the Sacred Arts in Windham, New York.
For the exhibit Hugh will be contributing a new work: The Many Faces of Jesus
Clara Maria Goldstein was born Catholic in Nicaragua in 1961. She emigrated to Miami in 1981 with her daughter and husband. The couple later divorced. Clara learned English, went to college, and graduated from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1997. While in law school she married a Jewish man, Jason Goldstein. They subsequently had two sons. In 2002 Clara converted to Judaism. After practicing law for a few years she decided to become a full-time artist. In 2011 she studied with Armando Morales, one of Latin America's most renowned artists (unfortunately he passed away later that year).
While studying Judaism for conversion, Clara realized that she did not think of Jesus as a Jew, even though she had been taught that in Catholic religious classes. She also recalled that while growing up she had never seen images of a Jewish Jesus. In studying Judaism she discovered that Jesus was a pious rabbi who taught Judaism, not Christianity. She then set out to create a body of work that depicted Jesus as a Jew throughout his life. These images can be seen in her book, The Missing Paintings of Jesus as a Jew and a YouTube video, The Judaism of Jesus, that shows her artworks.
When Clara's Jewish Jesus paintings were exhibited at Gundersen Lutheran Hospital in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 2006, they were called controversial and she was instructed to take them down, as reported in the Chicago Tribune, the Associated Press, and other international news organizations.
Clara believes that Christians and Jews should respect and appreciate one another, despite their differences. As a mother of both Christian and Jewish children, she says she has a vested interest in promoting harmony between the two religions.
For the exhibit "Putting Judaism Back in the Picture: Toward Healing the Christian/Jewish Divide" Clara is submitting her video, and she will also create a new artwork.
Website: Rabbi Jesus Art Museum
YouTube video: The Judaism of Jesus
Beth Grossman is an accomplished artist based in San Francisco. She calls herself a socio-political artist who “...sees the visual as a way to create community dialog. Her art is a comfortable point of entry into the ongoing dialog about ‘correct’ history, the life-shaping force of religion and the power of social beliefs...,”
Her perspective fits perfectly with the exhibit, “Putting Jesus back in the Picture: Toward Healing the Christian/Jewish Divide. For the exhibit she will submit her highly acclaimed sculptures “Our Mother Mary Found”
Grossman has exhibited and performed nationally and internationally, including: the International NaturKunst Forum: Licherode, Germany, Jewish Women’s Summit: Volga River, Russia; Keepers of the Water: Chengdu, China; the de Young Museum: San Francisco; Minneapolis Institute of Arts; Ellis Island Immigration Museum: New York; National Jewish Museum: Washington, D.C.; the Contemporary Jewish Museum: San Francisco; Minnesota History Center: Saint Paul, MN; Jewish Museum of Florida: Miami; National Museum of American Jewish History: Philadelphia and City Halls and Public Libraries in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Naomi Susan Schwartz-Jacobs was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland at the height of the Protestant-Catholic conflict. She has been a serious artist since elementary school. A digital artist since 2008, Jacob's work includes both bright, colorful abstracts as well as specifically Jewish themed art, with pieces celebrating creation and the Exodus, female figures in the Bible, depictions of the Kabbalistic Sephirot and a moving black and white expression of the Holocaust. Most recently her art has been exhibited at a "Living in Joy" exhibition at the National Jewish Retreat and at the Imjewnation Passover Exhibition in Saint Louis. Jacobs was also recently featured on the J Art blog. Jacobs is also a scholar and teacher of Second Temple Judaism and has taught New Testament courses at the University level to Christians, during which she emphasized Jesus' Jewishness.
Brian Rutenberg has been called one of the most highly acclaimed visual artists to come out of South Carolina since Jasper Johns. Brian, who currently lives and works in New York City has been in over 100 exhibitions throughout North America and in Europe. His landscape inspired abstractions use the light and geography of his native South Carolina low country as the starting point for his highly inventive and richly colored compositions that elicit a visceral experience with a sense of spirituality. Brian’s paintings are included in public and private collections all over the world and can be found in such museums as Yale University Gallery of Art in New Haven, CT, The Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio, The Peabody-Essex Museum of Art in Salem, MA, The Hunter Museum of Art in Chattanooga, TN, and many, many others. Brian has already had two retrospective exhibitions, one at the Butler Institute of American Art in 2001 and a massive 88 piece survey at the State Museum of South Carolina in 2006. He is a Fulbright Scholar, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow, and has been the recipient of numerous other awards. Brian is represented by Forum Gallery in New York & Los Angeles, Jerald Melberg Gallery in Charlotte, Toomey-Tourell Gallery in San Francisco, David Lusk Gallery in Memphis, and Tew Galleries in Atlanta. His paintings can also be found aboard the Mirabella V, the largest sailing vessel in the world.
A beautiful 164 page monograph on Brian’s work has been published by Radius Books and is available through bookstores nationwide. Written by New York art historian and critic Martica Sawin, the book features 85 rich color plates.
For the exhibit Brian will be contributing a painting from his collection, and/or may create a new work.
Ruth Schreiber is an artist whose work explores aspects of being female and Jewish in contemporary society. Her subjects include family and relationships, ceremony and ritual, memory and death. Ruth's art often focuses on the female body with all its changes during pregnancy and motherhood, and the various stages of aging and entropy. She is interested in the surface of the human envelope, the failings of its structures as it ages, and our various attempts to minimize these changes. She also likes to explore traditional texts, especially the Bible, in new ways, and to shine a light on family and other material from the Holocaust.
Ruth studied art at several institutions in London and California, and most recently at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem. Ruth has taught art to children for a number of years and since 1996 has been a docent at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem. Her oeuvre is multi-faceted as she works in a wide variety of media: painting and drawing, ceramics and sculpture, video art and photography, print-making and installation pieces. Ruth's artworks can be found in private collections on three continents, and in the Ben Uri Gallery (The London Jewish Museum of Art) UK, and in Israel, in the Jerusalem Print Workshop, the Ein Harod Museum of Art and Yad Vashem Museum collections. Ruth works from her studio in Jerusalem, Israel.
For this project, Ruth is working on a collage to include references to the historical Jesus from within Judaism and other Jewish sources and material.
Israel Tsvaygenbaum was born in Derbent, Dagestan, Russia. He is a graduate of the Izberbash College in Izberbash, Dagestan, Russia, and holds a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Krasnodar, Russia. In 1980, Israel organized an artists' group called COLORIT that exhibited in many cities in Russia. A number of his works are in the collection of the Museum of Imitative Arts, Derbent. Israel has also exhibited in the United States and Canada. Other works can be found in private collections in nine countries, including Austria, Bulgaria, France, Israel, the Netherlands, Russia, the United Kingdom and the U.S. Russian TV Channels One and TV6 showed his solo exhibitions in Moscow at the East Gallery and Central House of Artists. Israel’s interviews have been broadcast on Russian TV programs such as "The Morning" and "The Northeast Crown." In 1994, he and his family left Russia because it became very dangerous to continue to live in the republic of Dagestan. Currently, he is a resident of Albany, New York. Israel aspires to make the world into a little kinder place: “I believe that art is as necessary as the air we breathe; it is what makes us human.”
YouTube Video: YouTube.com/title=watch?v=F2FfR7O4Tow
YouTube Video: YouTube.com/watch?v=g2bdpjOm5VY