The Amen Institute

We’re creating an online Jewish community, spreading wisdom and Torah through art.

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Mission Statement

(From the founder of the Amen Institute, Dvir Cahana)

Everyone can learn to benefit from seeing things from new perspectives. Each new vantage point supplies a wrinkle of texture that had not previously existed. The art of Parshanut (rabbinic commentary) and Midrashic interpretations (subtextual elaborations), throughout millenia, have thrived on creatively turning texts on their head and bringing new voices into the conversation. These voices often have not included the artists of their respective communities, despite the symbolism and poetry of the Jewish canon being inherently woven in the tongue of creativity.

The Amen Institute seeks to empower artists – these long overlooked conduits of wisdom and instinctual probers – by integrating their creative lenses, with rabbinic guidance, into the exegetical process. The rabbis bring the 3000 year-old traditions of commentary, while the artists pair up with them to add new colors to those interpretations. All of which, we will harness and distribute to the wider Jewish community, which is so hungry for innovative Jewish content, thus forging unexplored pathways and facilitating new access points to push the tradition of expanding the Torah’s multiplicity of meanings into uncharted dimensions.

This website was supported by:

The Bronfman Fellowship

Mechon Hadar

The Montreal Jewish Museum