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Rav Alter with a portrait of the pnei menachem

Rav Alter and our artwork

The final invitation had just been sent out.

The annual shul siyum was happening.

Each person was checking to ensure that they had completed the learning they took upon themselves the year before, ready for the announced date.

The main speaker of the event was announced.

Rav Daniel Chaim Alter, Rosh yeshiva and youngest son of the previous Rebbe of Gur – the Pnei Menachem would give the keynote speech.

⚡ Excitement rippled through our house.

The Pnei Menachem portrait was one of our favorite in our collection.

And although we are not chassidish, we had gone through the biography of the Pnei Menachem while creating his portrait and had been deeply touched by his incredible middos and stories.

How often do we get to meet the son of one of the Gedolim?

We immediately knew that we wanted to present an artwork to Rav Daniel of his father at the event.

But it’s not that simple,

❓ who did we need to speak to first?

❓ Would his gabbi let it through?

❓ Would he be willing to accept a present?

We spoke to all we could and gathered support but we waited on the night to see if we could make it through.

As Rav Daniel arrived to speak, I approached his gabbai and showed him the artwork.

He loved it and immediately gave us the ok to present it after the drosha.

Once the Rosh Yeshiva finished speaking, he sat down at the head table.

It was the moment we waited for.

We approached him with our square box with our logo embossed on the outside.

Suddenly the table was engulfed by half the shul coming to see what was going on.

As I opened up the box to reveal the portrait of the Pnei Menachem, the Rosh Yeshiva was visibly taken aback in surprise and wonder.

And then he leant forward to touch the portrait and understand how it the laser cut stainless steel contrasted with the black acrylic.

And he said out loud

“דמות דיוקנו של אביו נראתה לו”

– referring to the image of Yaakov Avinu which Yosef saw in Egypt at the time he needed spiritual support the most

The shul was ablaze with excitement at the gesture

and we were very happy that we had the zchus to be able to present this meaningful piece of art to one of the sons of the Gerre Rebbe.

“דמות דיוקנו של אביו נראתה לו”

referring to the image of Yaakov Avinu which Yosef saw in Egypt at the time he needed spiritual support the most
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