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Jewish mysticism

These very new pieces are inspired by The Zohar, the preeminent text of Kabbalah. I am part of a group that reads a section of the Zohar everyday. Rather than represent the images, which are amazing (e.g. a thirteen petalled rose, each petal surrounded by compassion), I'm trying to embody the mysteries, which are often referred to as "mysterious wisdom."

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science.  Albert Einstein

These pieces were created in connection with the Jewish ritual of counting the Omer, a practice related to the spring and agriculture. Traditionally, one recites a prayer every day, counting each of the  49 days between Passover and Shavout. To count the days visually, I made the works on individual seed packets (a nod to agriculture) and based the pieces on the meanings of the Hebrew numbers, the first 22 of which are the same as the letters. Most of the meanings relate to Kabbalistic interpretations of both numbers and letters.

As an artist, one of the aspects of this project that interested me was working with  the varied shapes of the seed packets - torn, cut, folded, and crumpled. Another was the amount that I learn through working with constraints, in this case, the Omer, the Hebrew numbers and letters and their interpretations, the seed packet ground, and daily repetition.

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