On view October 29 - December 5
Click here for the virtual artist talk
Organized by: Liam Ze’ev O’Connor, and Shterna Goldbloom
With artists: Hannah Altman, Rachel Fein-Smolinski, Shterna Goldbloom, Charlie Manion, SaraNoa Mark, Isabel Mattia, Liam Ze’ev O’Connor, Roni Packer, Tamar Paley, Izah Ransohoff, Val Schlosberg, Suzanne Silver, Olive Stefanski, Michael Swartz.
Havruta (from Aramaic for "Friend") is a traditional approach to studying Jewish texts with a partner. Unlike other modes of study, havruta learning is often boisterous and animated: students read text and commentary aloud and analyze, question, and debate until they reach a mutual understanding. As they construct and reconstruct the text, students are known to gesture wildly or even shout at each other. The meaning comes from the relationship formed between the three partners, two people and one text. In a world that views students as vessels to fill with knowledge, this approach is a radical one. Students become co-creators of knowledge, shaping and changing the texts through the intimate experience of listening, and questioning.
For Havruta, seven pairs of artists studied Jewish texts and made new works together. Responding to the way that the pandemic has distorted our days and weeks, the texts we selected to focus on Jewish conceptions of time. They range from traditional Talmud, Yiddish and Hebrew Poetry, and Jewish philosophy. In this moment where our sense of community has become precarious, we view this show as an opportunity to facilitate an intimate and generative experience of creating art through and across time. By bringing together artists from across the city and the country, we hope to nurture and develop these collaborations to create even more moments of heated discussion, exaggerated gestures, and strange questions.