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From the concept to the project
Jews are the people of the word, not of the image. The Torah starts with the word. Figurative art is generally avoided due to what is perhaps a somewhat strict interpretation
of the second commandment. There are few Jewish painters. Among them are Pissarro, Chagall and, in Italy, Modigliani. Crafts are a different matter: we have mezuzot, menorot and hanukkiot that do credit to the name
of Cellini. The lights of the menorah and hanukkiah explain the relationship between man and G-d: they illuminate like the Divine. The Supreme, though hidden, shares the light of His presence. I am short-sighted and when I created my hanukkiah I wanted to convey the feeling of an Art Nouveau lamp. When you look at it you see a branch with leaves, in the typical floral style of that period. The empty BIC ball point pens look like the glass bars used in Austrian lamps during the Jugendstil period. That is why I called the lamp Jugend Stilo. As in all my works, I have played with words and materials, blending the sacred and the profane. There are different ways for man to get close to the Divine. We cannot forget the paintings of the Rabbis in prayer, nor should we limit ourselves to thinking that those images alone are “prayer”.
Dervishes pray through their dances. Art and dancing are simply different ways of praying.