38—Friday, December 6, 1968
THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
Jacob Steinhardt: An Appreciation
You may be free from sin, but
In 1914 Steinhardt joined the
By SHALOM BEN CHORIN
Jacob Steinhardt was born May army, and at the Eastern Front he if your body is not
will be too weak to serve God
27, 1887, at Czerkow, in the prov-
Maintain your health and
ince of Posen. He died Feb. 11, Eastern Jews and with Jewish folk- aright.
ways. This encounter was decisive preserve your strength.
1968, at Nahariya, Israel.
* * *
The cities of Berlin and Jerusa-
The Besht was about to enter a
lem determined his personality Jews, for the Jewish philosopher
synagogue but he halted at the
and work, indicating the polarity
writer Sammy Gronemann no less door and exclained: "This is over-
o f his t
for the painters Struck and filled with
i prayers and learning!"
He was still a child when in
1897 his family moved to Berlin Steinhardt. The experience of this i "Why, then, do you hesitate to
where he attended school and, as encounter left an indelible mark on enter such a holy place?" inquired
a first step in his artistic educa- Steinhardt's work. At an early age cis disciples.
tion, became apprenticed to the in his work he felt that his Jewish
Were this a truly sacred place,"
Museum of Arts and Crafts. Dur- orientation, evidenced by his illus- replied the Besht, "the prayers and
ing the holidays, however, Jacob trations of the Bible, the Passover learning would have ascended
used to visit his grandfather at Hagada and stories of East Euro- heavenward, and this synagogue
Czerkow, and his portrait, lovingly pean Jewish authors, pointed to would be empty of them. Only the
painted in oil by the grandson, Eretz Israel. He visited the coon- prayers and learning which does
always hung in his Jerusalem try for the first time in 1925, but not come from the heart can fill an
little did he imagine at the time
The g e n i a 1 impressionist that in only eight years he would
* * *
painter, Loves Corinth, was Stein. settle there for good.
Once the Baal Shem said:
hardt's first real teacher and in
power, Steinhardt felt that the "There are precious stones beyond
several respects he became his
atmosphere in Berlin had become cavil; everyone can see the gleam
guide and model. However, it
unbearable for a Jewish artist. and the lights they shed in their
was the Jewish artist Hermann
different colors; their genuineness
Struck who directed Steinhardt The compass of his heart pointed can be recognized at once. These
to Jerusalem. He was appointed
to his proper artistic field and
director of the graphic depart- are the Jews who are true Hasidim,
career and was, incidentally,
ment of the Bezalel School of There are also false gems: these
destined to precede him to Eretz
and there he raised a large are the hypocritical pietists. Final-
ly there are stones, 'treasures con-
In 1919 Steinhardt went to Paris number of disciples.
cealed in the sand,' which cannot
Was Steinhardt a good teacher?
and was introduced by Henri Ma-
at once be identified as precious.
tisse to the higher order of graphic He was too good, and for some These are the Jews who easily
precision. Two years later he was time too many little Steinhardts
in Italy to study the Old Masters left school to experience diffi-
in Rome, Venice and Florence. culties in finding their artistic
Back in Berlin, he exhibited his selves in the shadow of their great
By DR. SAMUEL SILVER
works in 1912, and with some teacher and master.
(A Seven Arts Feature)
His painting "The Prophet"
other—mostly Jewish—artists of a
Every once in a while you read
similar bent and trend founded a
group of expressionist painters - eubistic - expressionist style indi- something so witty or trenchant
called "The Pathetics." A catalog cated forebodings of impending that you want to share it with
of his pictures indicated a pre- doom as though the artist en- others.
That's how I felt about the fol-
ponderance of Biblical subjects visioned the outbreak of World
like Dance 'Round the Golden War I. The picture was purchased lowing statement which appeared
the Post-Intelligencer of Seattle,
Calf, Crossing the Red Sea, Lot's
Fight, Cain, Jeremiah. He had lin, but disappeared when the Wash. The article follows:
"Since you cannot refrain from
found his bearings. Steinhardt's Nazis came to power. After an
book, "The Prophets," published adventurous odyssey it was brought drinking, why not start a saloon
as late as 1963, had similar sub- back to Berlin and today it again in your own home? Be the only
jects. As a Jew and artist Stein- adorns the hall of the new Com- customer and you will not have
to buy a license.
hardt remained fascinated by munity Center.
After World War II Steinhardt's
"Give your wife $55 to buy a
prophecy as the expression of the
case of bar whiskey. There are
highest and most genuine pathos.
Moses and Jeremiah are recurrent, In 1959 he was given a prize in 240 drinks in a case. Buy all your
motives of his paintings and wood- I San Francisco for his wood en- drinks from your wife at 60 cents
cuts; most profound, too, is his gravings, and in the same year a drink and in 12 days when the
interpretation of the recalcitrant the "Pro arte liturgics" award was case is gone, your wife will have
prophet, Jonah. An exquisite edi- conferred upon him by the Bien- $89 to put in the bank and $55
tion of the Book of Jonah pub- nale in Venice. It is a strange to buy another case.
"If you live 10 years and con-
lished by the Jewish Publication coincidence that the Municipal
Society of America was illustrated Council of Jerusalem and the tinue to buy all your whiskey from
by Steinhardt. Senate of Berlin honored Stein- your wife and then die in your
hardt in one and the same year- boots, your wife will have $27,-
1966 Last year the Israel Museum 085.47 on deposit—enough to bring
Canada Jewish Congress in Jerusalem arranged a compre- up your kids, pay off the mortgage
hensive exhibition of his works.
on the house, marry a decent man
Supports Grape Strikers
TORONTO (JTA)—The Canadian
Jacob Steinhardt was the Jew- and forget she ever knew a drunk-
Jewish Congress announced its ish artist par excellence and not en bum like you."
support of the San Joaquin Valley only because so many of his sub-
(California) table grape field work- jects were drawn from the Jew- Israel Should Allow Return
ers who are striking for better ish milieu. The famous French
artist Gustave Dore, for example, of Refugees, Rusk Says
wages and working conditions.
illustrated the whole of the Bible,
A statement issued by Sydney M.
the Hebrew spirit was utterly of State Dean Rusk said Monday
Harris, chairman of the CJCon-
foreign to him. It is not the that Israel should permit Arab
gress' central region, called on
consumers, wholesalers and retail- , theme in itself that makes the refugees to return to their former
ers of California table grapes to artist Jewish, although, of course, homes. Such action by Israel, he
the choice of so many Jewish said, would consitute a "most di-
recognize the issues involved and
"act according to the dictates of subjects cannot be a mere rect and efficient means of bring-
chance. Nor is it due to mere ing relief to displaced persons,"
chance that Steinhardt went to Rusk said.
The statement deplored repres-
sive measures being taken against Israel and remained here. The
He expressed this opinion in a
the strikers and noted that "the Jewishness of Steinhardt's art is telegram to the Near East Dona-
true meaning of our Jewish tradi- much deeper.
tions Committee here. It was in
Prophecy and the visionary ele- reply to a message from that com-
tion rests on the efforts we put
forth to secure justice and right- ment, it has been said, played a mittee urging the administration to
eousness as a foundation stone of great role in Steinhardt's work.
assist Arab refugees, who, it said,
He will endure as long as men were made homeless by Israel and
our civilization." The statement
was issued on the occasion of a
who are facing the rigors of the
"silent march" here in which rep- line and color.
resentatives of various faith joined
to protest the conditions of Cali- German-Israel Line Open Norfolk Home for Aged
fornia grape workers.
BONN (JTA)—A Lufthansa air-
NORFOLK, Va. (JTA) — The
liner returned here from its inaug- Beth Sholom Home for the Aged
70,000 Jews in Tashkent i ural flight to Israel which estab- has announced an increase for
LONDON (JTA)—Reports reach- lished twice-weekly service between residents in maintenance fees to
ing here state there are presently Lydda, Frankfurt and Munich. $400 a month from the previous
70.000 Jews living in Tashkent, Lufthansa is West Germany's na- $350 because of steadily increasing
capital of the Uzbekistan Soviet tional airline.
costs, according to Milton Perel,
Republic, a Central Asian city of
Passengers on the flight included president. He cited the institution's
some 594,000 inhabitants.
the federal minister of transport, compliance with the minimum
The community numbers three Georg Leber; Prime Minister wage-hour law, mounting costs for
Yiddish writers, Yossef Itzkov, Georg August Zinn of the State of food, laundry service and utilities,
Max Tanenzap and Mendel Gold- Hesse; and Ambassador Asher as well as an increase in the
man, the latter originally from Ben-Nathan, Israel's envoy to West quality of services to residents.
Bialysok. A number of the Tash- Germany.
kent Jews are Bukharan, but the
It is the crushed grape that gives
majority came to Tashkent during
He that teaches his neighbor's out blood-red wine: it is the suffer-
World War T1, from , European, ftlIs; chilci Abe X9ra, !IS as if be himself ing soul that breathes ,the sweat-
`Start a Saloon'
sia and the Battle states.
had begetter' hlitl.ganliddrDa"
Book on Colonial Jewry
Sayings of Baal Shem-Tov (Besht),
Founder of Hasidic Movement
' surrender to untrammeled desires
and passions, and who do not fol-
low the injunctions of the Law.
Nevertheless, they, too, carry in
their heart the treasurer of abid-
ing love for humanity."
He meditated for a moment, and
then continued: "But they are all
to be Marked by Hasidim
The American Jewish Historical
Society has announced the publica-
tion of "The Wills of Early New
York Jews (1704-1799)," the
fourth volume in its series of
Stedies in American Jewish his-
tory. Designed for the layman and
genealogist, as well as the pro-
fessional scholar, the books shows
an unusual picture of 18th Century
American Jewish life covering not
only religious matters but also
political, economic and social af-
affairs as well.
Editor of the volume is Leo Her-
shkowitz of the history department
of Queens College, who also serves
as associate director of the Insti-
tute for Early New York History.
NEW YORK—Tens of thousands
of Jews in communities through-
out the world will festively mark
Tuesday the 170th anniversary of
In things pertaining to enthusi-
the liberation of Rabbi Schneur asm no man is sane who does not
Zalman of Liadi from Czarist pris- know how to become insane on
on, on the 19th of Kislev.
Rabbi Schneur Zalman (1745-
—H. W. Beecher
1812), founder of the Chabad-Lu-
bavitch movement, widely promul-
gated Hasidic teachings among the
Jewish masses in Russia, Poland
and Lithuania, despite overwhelm-
ing opposition. After abortive at-
A L R E L R S - JEWELRY
tempts to counter his rapidly grow-
PEARL AND BEAD STRINGING
ing influence, some of his adver-
406 Broderick Tower — 963-2573
saries accused him of being un-
loyal to the Czarist government,
111 ■ 11.4••••••
and Rabbi Schneur Zalman was
The liberation and vindication of
the sage 53 days later are regard-
Plait your party for your
ed among Hasidim to be of general
symbolic and historical signifi-
We take care of all the
details .. Food, Music, etc.
Check our prices first
Orchestra and Entertainment
1.1 ■ 11.1 ■■
CUSTOM PVA PRIMER 2 35
WONKOTE ALKYD FLAT
Hours: Mon.-Frl 7 a.m.-5 p.m.
Closed Sat. Sun. 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
SOIL RESISTANT CARPET AND FURNITURE CLEANING
NEW CARPET AND ORIENTAL RUG SALES
AND STAIN REMOVAL
IfftWOOPIAN so mc
151110 WEST 8 MI, RD
"'"'" NEAR NORTHLAND