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Let There Be Light
Get ready for Chanukah with show and sale of handmade menorot.
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rtists from near and far will be represented in
the third annual menorah exhibit at the Janice
Charach Epstein Gallery in the West Bloomfield
Jewish Community Center.
"-Festival of Lights: Artists Interpret Chanukah," running
Dec. 4-Jan. 29, features unique ritual candleholders for
observing the eight-day holiday. Many of the artists, Jewish
and non-Jewish, will attend the opening reception sched-
uled for 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 4.
The exhibit was curated by Janis Wetsman, a longtime
gallery owner who helped arrange for 30 artists with
"I got a list of artists from Jams and added to that," says
Sylvia Nelson, gallery director. "I invited some younger
artists to show their work. I also brought in Judaica fiber
pieces for a companion exhibit and will have some dreidels
and small menorot from Israel. The smaller pieces are very
affordable and support the Israeli artistic community."
Arnold Schwarzbart, a Judaica artist based in Tennessee,
has come up with a design that probes the history of the
holiday. Smaller pieces are now rare for Schwarzbart
because he devotes most of his professional time to large
commissions for synagogues.
"The menorah I will be showing is part of a series of
three," explains Schwarzbart, who worked with
stoneware, clay and porcelain lamps. "I came up with
the idea by asking myself a question.
"It is known that the Maccabeans [are responsible for]
the holiday of Chanukah but did not come up with the
idea for the menorah. I started thinking about what designs
might be appropriate if they had started using it."
Calling his piece Maccabean Stele, a reference to an
archaeological marker, Schwarzbart includes pieces of text
to give historic context.
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Nelson, gallery director. "I
asked them to do this
exhibit because of the
quality of their work and -
their interest in JeN-vish
Sedar-Shetman's fascination with
sewing derives from the interests of
her mother, grandmother and great-
grandmother. With a degree from
the Fashion Institute of New York,
she sometimes makes special wear-
ables. Recently, she designed and
made an evening dress for a fashion
show to raise funds to fight cystic
The artist, who has taught com-
puterized digitizing and design, won
top honors in two international
"Soft Judaica" exhibit features ritual objects in fabric.
Ibis is a sm,,ke etiut Liga“, - 1ive environment
DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
Gabriel Bass, who works out of a studio in Seattle, uses
yellow cedar for the two menorot he will be showing.
One has two carved lions with glass fittings for the can-
dles. The other is a tree of life designed with an eagle
with outspread wings.
Bass, a graduate of Andover High School in Bloomfield
Township, plans on moving to Israel in December to gain
Reservations now being
taken through 2004
Gabriel Bass, a Bloomfield Hills Andover High School gradu-
ate, works out of a studio in Seattle, and uses yellow cedar for
the two menorot he will be showing. He learned to carve from
a native totem pole carver in British Columbia.
ancy Sedar-Sherman is
among four artists showing
fabric creations for "Soft
Judaica," a holiday exhibit comple-
menting "Festival of Lights: Artists
The fabric art, embellished with
quilting, embroidery and hand-
dying techniques, will be on view
Dec. 4-Jan. 29 along the top level of
the Janice Charach Epstein Gallery.
The works represent many Jewish
holidays as well as Chanukah.
"I will be showing embroidered
dreidels as well as Purim flags, tallit
and challah covers," says Sedar-
Sherman, based in Colorado. "My
main interest is embroidery, and I
find it fun researching Jewish history
to come up with ideas for my art.
Two other Colorado artists,
Barbara Cohn and Carol Watkins,
also will be represented in the exhib-
it along with Sherri Roberts of Ohio.
"These artists have been part of
our annual fiber shows," says Sylvia