Earlier this week, I had the privilege of working with the wonderful educators who are part of The Jewish Education Project‘s Generation Now Cohort I. As part of their three day seminar, they explored two questions: With Whom and What Am I Connected? and To Whom and for What Am I Responsible in This World? Each fellow selected a text (Jewish text, song, book, poem, …) that speaks to one or both of those questions as their inspiration for their fiber art. Many came with a text in mind and jumped right into their art design.
The piece on the left below was inspired by Talmudic story found in Bava Metzia 59. The moral of the story is that Torah and the laws are not in the heaven. It is people who create Torah and its meaning. The center piece below is inspired by the opening line of “With a Little Help From My Friends” by the Beatles. And the end of Winnie the Pooh, where Pooh and Piglet talk about what they think about first thing in the morning, inspired the piece on the right below.
The first piece below was inspired by a book about the Holocaust which talks about moving from the darkness to the light. I didn’t get a good photo of the center piece below, but it was inspired by a story about Rabbi Akiva from Makkot 24b where Rabbi Akiva comforts his colleagues when they see a fox coming out of the Temple. His art shows tears getting smaller above flames which represent the destruction of the Temple. And the piece on the right below was inspired by a quote from Brene Brown “True belonging is not something you negotiate externally, it’s what you carry in your heart.”
A Russian song about war and fire leading to peace was the text behind the piece on the left below. The center piece was inspired by Pirkei Avot 2:21 which states “You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to desist from it.” And the final piece was inspired by a personal story in which she found connection in unexpected places.
There were many more wonderful pieces, but I wasn’t able to get good photos of everyone presenting. I hope the Fellows enjoyed the process of Translating Text into Textile and that it helped them think about their inspiration texts in a different way.