Sign In Forgot Password

Artist in Residence Weekend 2024

The “Art” of Torah
with Israeli Artist Rabbi Matthew Berkowitz
Vice President, The Schechter Institutes, Jerusalem and
Co-founder, Kol HaOt: Illuminating Jewish Life Through Art, Jerusalem 
April 4-7, 2024
Explore How the Arts Bring God's Presence into Our Midst
What role can art play in Jewish learning and bringing God's presence into our midst? This very unique program will explore the role of the visual and explanatory arts in creating sacred community. Classical and modern artists in concert with rabbinic voices will animate a unique weekend of Jewish learning that combines heads, hands, and hearts. As the program will take place in the weeks leading up to Passover, there will be a special focus on the many themes presented in the Haggadah.  
Interested in sponsoring the weekend? Click here for more details and to sponsor!
Thank you to our generous sponsors (as of 3.5.24).

Friday Night “Learn and Dinner with the Artist”
6:00PM: Services
6:45PM - Artist Lecture: Rembrandt and the Rabbis
7:30PM - Dinner
Register for dinner here
Rembrandt and the Rabbis: Imaging and Imagining the Exodus from Egypt
This session will explore the pivotal narrative of the Israelites crossing the Red Sea.  What imagery is evoked by the Exodus narrative as the Israelites cross to freedom?  How have master artists interpreted this episode? To what extent do our own interpretations of the p’shat (literal text) dovetail with artistic and rabbinic voices? In this animated session, we will see how art serves as one of the 70 faces of Torah interpretation, “shivim panim la’Torah.”

Saturday Morning
9:00AM - Services
10:45AM - Sermon: Rabbi Berkowitz presents
“The Delicate Dance: Exploring Judaism’s Artistic Interplay with Other Cultures”
12:00PM - Kiddush Lunch
12:30PM - Gallery Walk

The Delicate Dance: Exploring Judaism’s Artistic Interplay with Other Cultures
Using the Biblical ritual of Passover as a jumping off point, we will explore how Judaism has consistently been shaped and enriched by larger cultures in which the Jews have found themselves. Examples will feature Biblical, Rabbinic, Medieval and Modern periods.
Gallery Walk: Passover Landscapes: Illuminations on the Exodus
Passover Landscapes: Illuminations on the Exodus represents a five-year journey of Jewish learning and art. Illuminated and authored by Rabbi Matthew L. Berkowitz and inspired by an original commission for a new family haggadah for Dedee and Stephen Lovell, Passover Landscapes offers a unique window into the seder experience. The project consists of three components: a portfolio of twenty-seven giclée prints (including three papercuts), a haggadah, and a book of commentary. It is a piece rich with influences and history, bringing the experience of the Exodus to a deeper and more meaningful level. The portfolio is entirely produced in Israel, bound in Jerusalem with end papers made of parsley in Zichron Yaakov, inspired by manuscripts from the Rare Book Room of The Jewish Theological Seminary, and woven together by a painting of a characteristic Israel landscape. Passover Landscapes is a Limited Edition of 250 pieces with 25 additional artist proofs. An exhibit of a selection of the 27 framed illuminations will be on display at B'nai Torah. Art and haggadot being displayed will be available for sale and a portion of each purchase will go to underwrite B’nai Torah’s Israel Education Programming.

Saturday Afternoon
5:00PM - Mincha
5:30PM - Shaleshudis and Guest Lecture: Creative Ideas to Enhance the Seder!
Creative Ideas to Enhance the Seder!
This session will present some colorful, fun and animated ideas that will enliven and enrich any seder experience. Using The Lovell Haggadah as inspiration, we will focus on curated sections from the Passover text to see how we can enliven the experience of telling the story this year.

Sunday Morning
All Ages Brunch & Hands-On Art Project 
Register here
The Four Children Unmasked
The haggadah refers to Four Children: the Wise, the Wicked, the Simple, and the One Who Does Not Know to Ask. What is the origin of the Four Children? How have the Four Children been represented in haggadot throughout the generations? How might the Four Children be represented today? With which of the Four Children do you most identify? This session will begin to answer these questions and will encourage us to think creatively about addressing the Four Children at the seder. 
Participants will work on a hands-on project in which they envision together their own unique version of The Four Children (For families, the idea will be to weave it into the interest/s of your child(ren), perhaps with a sports, music, book or candy theme). Parents and kids will walk away with teachable, usable art that will be a conversation piece at your seder this year!
Art and haggadot being displayed will be available for sale and a portion of each purchase will go to underwrite B’nai Torah’s Israel Education Programming.
Sun, April 21 2024 13 Nisan 5784