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October 09, 1987 - Image 54

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-10-09

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

LIFE IN ISRAEL

NOW . . . at your service

SONNY BRASS

"All that the name implies."

formerly of Progressive Cleaners

• Draperies
• Bedspreads
• Blankets (cleaned or laundered)
• Window Shades
• Lampshades
• Pillows
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The Ruth Young Wing

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Special to The Jewish News

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FRIDAY, OCT. 9, 1987

I

magine a seven-year-old
examining the Dead Sea
Scrolls to understand the
development of written lan-
guages, or a ten-year-old
using ancient Egyptian artis-
tic conventions to draw con-
temporary subjects, or a
group of Ethiopian Jewish
teenagers building clay
sculptures and dioramas to
describe life in their village.
These scenes take place daily
at the Isarel Museum's Ruth
Young Wing in Jerusalem.

The Ruth Youth Wing is
one of the largest and most
innovative museum educa-
tional centers in the world.
Unlike the conventional chil-
dren's museum, which is
usually tucked away within a
larger museum, the Ruth
Youth Wing is regarded as an
integral part of the Israel
Museum.
The Youth Wing's courses
use the entire museum as
their classroom. The mu-
seum's excellent conditions
of fine art, archeology and
ethnography are open to the
young artist to explore and
students are encouraged to
learn their way around the
galleries.
"We want to open their
eyes, to teach them to read a
work of art and then return to
the class and work with what
they have seen," explains
Youth Wing project coor-
dinator Aliza Bezalel.
Israel abounds with arts
and crafts courses. Almost
every local community center
offers instruction in painting,
sculpture and pottery. Yet, in
spite of this, the Ruth Wing
attracts thousands of young
people who travel from all
over Jerusalem to take ad-
vantage of the Youth Wing's
unique courses.
The Youth Wing seeks to
open its unique program to as
many young people as possi-
ble. It provides free bus ser-
vice to children from under-
privileged neighborhoods to
enable them to attend the
programs. In previous years,
the Youth Wing has also con-
ducted special programs for
Arab children from East
Jerusalem. The Gelmond
fund enables two to three ex-
ceptionally gifted young peo-
ple to receive individualized
instruction each year.
Like a conventional art
school, the Youth Wing's
courses focus on different
materials and techniques.
There are courses in wood-

Israeli children enjoy the Israel Museum's Youth Wing in Jerusalem.

working and welding, paint-
ing and printmaking and
more. However, in all
courses, studio work is in-
tegrated with trips to the
galleries. Thus, students of
woodwork might seek inspir-
ation in the museum's collec-
tion of African wood
sculpture.

In recent years, the Youth
Wing's courses have attemp-
ted to make a more system-
atic use of the galleries. The
Youth Wing has developed
courses which focus on a
specific theme such as "In
the Steps of the Masters,"
which explores the museum's
collection of European paint-
ing from the perspective of a
young painter.
The Youth Wing has also
been experimenting with
mixed media and multi-media
courses. This fall, the Youth
Wing introduced a "revolv-
ing course" which allows the
budding artists to take three
mini-courses in different
media. Another popular mixed
media offering is called
"Books, Stories and Illustra-
tions." In that course, teams
of elementary school children
take a magical journey
through the museum to learn
about where stories and
books come from. Then, based
on what they have gleaned
they create their own story-
books.
The Ruth Youth Wing re-
gards itself as a laboratory
for learning. The instructors
are given a free hand and
there are as many methods as
there are teachers. While
some instructors prefer to
concentrate on individual
projects, others engage their
students in collective en-
deavors.
Visitors to the Youth Wing
will immediately note the
large cement beasts which
greet them as they enter.

These wild surrealistic
animals were sculptured by
students in the Youth Wing's
summer program. As the
summer drew to a close, they
realized that their project
hadn't been completed.
Determined to finish their
masterpieces, these young
people continued to come to
the museum after school, un-
til they finished.
This year, the Youth Wing
celebrates its 20th anniver-
sary. All year long, the
museum will be displaying
works accumulated during
this period. Presently on ex-
hibit is a retrospective ex-
hibit covering 20 years of
painting instruction at the
Youth Wing. Included in the
exhibit are youthful works of
celebrated Israeli artists
Gabi Klezmer, Ra'anan Levi
and Yair Guttman. The cap-
tions that underscore their
work sum up the Youth
Wing's philosophy: "It was
not our teaching which made
them artists; that was their
own doing."

"1

1 IN BRIEF

Israel, S. Africa
In Barter Deal

Tel Aviv (JTA) — Israel has

entered a barter deal with

South Africa to exchange
non-military aircraft for coal,
Energy Minister Moshe
Shahal announced Monday.
Israel Radio said a South
African coal mine would
receive Astra executive jet
planes manufactured by
Israel Aircraft Industries
(IAI). Shahal insisted that the
barter arrangement in no
way contravenes the Inner
Cabinet's decision of Sept. 16
to drastically curtail trade
with South Africa and impose
other sanctions against the
apartheid regime.

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