At the beginning of the year, Eli Weinbach, Hody Nemes, Emile Ackerman and Dvir Cahana, brainstormed how to create a space for Jewish religious creatives to gather, make art, and build community. With the support of the Harlem Moishe House and Yeshivat Chovevei Torah and with Rabbi Bronwen Mullin’s guidance, we arrived at the idea of putting out a call for art that explores the Jewish themes of veiling and revealing. This concept nicely tied into both the Purim festival (the masquerade laden Jewish holiday) and the one year anniversary of the Covid-19 pandemic (on the Hebrew calendar). On February 27th, we created an online art exhibition where we gave our artists the space to share their work all while fundraising for Hazon. We were so pleasantly surprised by the diversity of artists that heeded the call from musicians, embroiderers, painters to wood stainers and everything in between, it was quite the assortment.
There was a lot to learn in organizing our first online art exhibition, but there was also a whole lot to be proud of. 23 artists presented their impressive work, we put together an album with music from each of the artists, there were over 150 participants throughout the evening, three pieces were sold, and we fundraised $500 to Hazon.
With our J.A.W. Breakers Fellowship cohort being double that of this first exhibition’s roster, and with significantly more institutional awareness and support of our work, along with a full year to release a much more comprehensive promotional strategy, we are aiming to make next year’s art exhibition reach a ten times bigger scale. Our Color Commentary Art Exhibition, our first under the title of the Amen Institute will be held in November of 2022. Stay tuned for updates throughout the year.