YU Museum: Biblical Joseph translated into fabric wall hangings

I attended a wonderful opening last night of the exhibit of fabric wall hangings at the Yeshiva University Museum. Sylvia Herskowitz has directed the museum for many years and her magnificent achievements are evident throughout.

The building that houses the museum is substantial. The exhibits are high quality, logical and professional. The staff is attentive.

The opening featured several speakers who came right to the point. Jerry Hochbaum, Director of the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture praised the artist and the museum. Jerry has been doing wonderful things in support of Jewish culture and especially Jewish scholarship for over thirty years. I should know since I received a dissertation fellowship grant from the foundation in 1973.

Here is the press release for the exhibit:

through - MARCH 25, 2007

New York, NY: October 25, 2006 -- Yeshiva University Museum (YUM) in Chelsea will present an exhibition of fiber artworks interpreting the Biblical story of Joseph, by Israeli artist Chana Cromer. Cromer’s multi-layered fabric hangings shed light on the complex layers of Joseph’s personality and the symbolism in his “coat of many colors.” Among the 12 works on view are several colorful garments as well as tapestries suspended from the ceiling. Close inspection reveals a number of distinct artistic techniques that are interwoven within individual works, including collage, embroidery, etching, silk-screening and staining with natural plants, berries and leaves. When installed together, the exhibition provides an insightful fusion of fine art, craft and Biblical narrative.

The Story of Joseph: Unveiling the Text is Cromer’s first New York solo show and reflects the artist’s interest in the Bible. Using the story of Joseph from the first Book of Genesis as her point of departure, the artist points out that “clothing plays a part in every stage of Joseph’s life: as favored son, prisoner, servant, and Egyptian official, he wears clothes of different textures.” Cromer’s fiber artworks display her mastery of textile surface design and printmaking, as well as her understanding of text and commentary. The exhibition is accompanied by a full-color catalogue published in Israel with the generous support of the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture.

Chana Cromer is the daughter of Holocaust survivors, born in Italy and raised in Kansas City, Missouri. Cromer studied textile surface design at Philadelphia College of the Arts and printmaking at New York’s Pratt Institute before receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Bezalel Art Institute in Jerusalem and a Masters of Arts in Education from Boston College. Her work has been exhibited widely throughout Israel, Europe and North America including U.S. galleries and museums in Atlanta, Boston, Cincinnati, Kansas City, Phoenix, and Washington, D.C. Cromer had solo exhibitions at Yale University (New Haven, CT) in 2002 and 2004. Currently based in Jerusalem, she teaches art at a Judaica textile workshop at Bar Ilan University in Ramat Gan.
The rest of my pictures of the fabric wall hangings are here.
Go visit the museum - you'll be happy you did.

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