People looking at Jewish art at a fair in Brooklyn

My North American Adventure

My latest overseas art trip to revisit New York and New Jersey and to debut in Canada was full of adventures and many learning curves.

Some of the highlights include:

  • flying in a small propeller plane between Toronto and Montreal (why don’t they warn you to TIGHTEN your seat belt!).
  • taking a ferry to the airport and takeoff over the sea at Billy Bishop airport
  • being saved from parallel parking a minivan in Brooklyn by a kind passer-by
  • parking in a Manhattan parking lot in between scaffolding and down a crazy steep ramp!

I am used to the African adventures so these North American adventures were really wild for me.

At least I had great stories to tell my children when I got back home to Israel :-).

In many places we exhibited, we came in the aftermath of pro-Palestinian protesters. I was amazed that nonetheless and notwithstanding the need for a police guard, the local Jews came out in huge numbers to support us and show that they were not deterred. We were very strengthened and appreciative.

Coming from Israel we have our own threats but outside of Israel, Jews are no less threatened and have to secure themselves both physically as well as mentally just as much. I felt so strongly that all Jews everywhere are in this together and share and gain our strength with each other.

Metal portrait of Chofetz Chaim at fair
Israel Shuk to Core vendor fair in US
Kotel metal artwork on display at US fair

I visited so many different parts of the tri-state area and so many different types of communities.

From Brooklyn and 5 Towns that I got to revisit -> Toronto and Montreal that I visited for the first time ever (and experienced real snow!) -> to the beautiful sunny Deal beachfront -> Staten Island and The Upper East Side of Manhattan at the Ramaz school.

A very personal highlight of the trip was that I got to spend a Shabbos in Toronto with my “close” extended family from South Africa that I had not seen for 25 years! And the next shabbos in Passaic with the other side of my family I had not seen in almost 20 years! That was really the biggest treat for me.

The advantage of being South African is that everyone has been leaving South Africa for 50 years and are now it’s possible to have cousins all over the world!

I debuted my new collection of Holy Places, showcasing my metal artwork of the Kotel.

I was so happy to see the excitement when people saw the Kotel artwork from far, and the amazement when they came close to see the laser cut metal holes and how the shapes all come together.

The Kotel is a piece that connects to every Jew in every community I went to, from those closer and further away from Torah values but connected to their Jewish identity never-the-less.

Israel, Jerusalem and the Kotel stand central in our Jewish identity.

Thank you to everyone who came out to meet me, support and encourage all of us on the program.

Please be in touch with me when you visit Israel!

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