On View: February 14 - June 30, 2005
The historic fate of two separate groups of people, Jews and African Americans, distanced by a span of three millennia, are linked together through the artistry of Leslie Golomb Hartman and Louise Silk. These two renowned fiber artists have created a series of quilts depicting the linked story of a Jewish slave-owning family, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Lyons Moss, and their runaway slave boy. The inescapable parallel between the Jewish Exodus from Egypt, as related in the Passover Haggadah, and the flight to freedom experienced by the boy are visually linked with symbolic images and text.
The artists, using actual motifs from historic quilts sewn by slave women and indicating the route to safe houses along the underground railroad, also borrow text from the Haggadah, patterns from contemporary African trade textiles, and the recognizable form of the matzah. The use of mid-nineteenth-century silhouettes to depict the family members, is echoed by the recurring profile of the boy.
Hartman and Silk have received numerous awards for their collaborative work, including the Art of the State Award, given by the State Museum of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Fellowship in Crafts for 2002. Their work has appeared extensively in diverse publications.
For a PDF of the exhibition catalog, please see click here.
Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Museum One West 4th Street (between Broadway and Mercer Street) Manhattan, New York
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