The Leona Rosenberg Scholarship
Leona Rosenberg, a very active supporter of the Hebrew University, first met Professor Bezalel Narkiss when she hosted a lecture in her home in Florida in 1993. Since then, Leona has been a good friend of the Center for Jewish Art and participated in the Center's last two symposia, "Jewish Art in Turkey" and "Jewish Art in Bohemia and Moravia."
Leona has already sponsored three scholarships at the Center. The recipient of this year's Leona Rosenberg Scholarship is Michael Tal, a master's degree student in the Department of Art History of Hebrew University and a researcher in the Center's Ritual Objects Section. Tal, from Kibbutz Gazit in the Western Galilee, completed his bachelor's degree at the Hebrew University in Jewish Studies and Art History. During his work at the Center, Tal has joined two expeditions to Eastern Europe and is using this experience in his present research for the Index on synagogue wall paintings and the ritual object collection of the Museum of Historical Treasures of the Ukraine. His master's thesis is on mosaic floors in the Mediterranean countries during the Byzantine period.
The Rita and Arturo Schwarz Scholarship in Modern Jewish Art
Antonia Lifchits, a new immigrant from Russia, is the recipient of the Rita and Arturo Schwarz Scholarship in Modern Jewish Art for the 1995-96 academic year. Antonia immigrated to Israel from Moscow three years ago where she graduated from the Department of the History of Art of Moscow State University with honors. She also worked as an assistant curator at the Matveyev Museum of Sculpture in Moscow. At this time Antonia began her connection with the Center, by documenting the sculptures by Moscow artist Vadim Sidur in the museum dedicated to his work, the Sidur Museum.
After arriving in Israel, Antonia began her doctorate at the Hebrew University's Department of Art History and she joined the research team of the Center for Jewish Art's Modern Section. Bringing her expertise on Russian art, she has been a tremendous asset in our efforts to bring to light modern Russian Jewish art, especially in cataloguing the collection in Jerusalem of paintings by Russian artist Meir Axelrod and works by the Russian Jewish avant-garde artist, Pavel Zaltzman.
Rita and Arturo Schwarz, of Milan, have a strong connections with Israel, where Mr. Schwarz lived for a brief period in his youth. He is very involved with the Tel Aviv University, Bezalel Academy of Art and Design and the Israel Museum, where he is an honorary fellow.
As an art historian, lecturer, essayist and poet, Arturo Schwarz has for many years been in the forefront of cultural life in Italy where he founded a publishing house and the Galleria Schwartz, venue for exhibitions by leading avant-garde artists.
He has 22 books to his credit, including The Complete Works of Marcel Duchamp, as well as articles, and 25 volumes of poetry. Mr. Schwarz is currently working on a book on Israeli art which will review the vast collection of 230 pieces which he has donated over the last three years to the Israel Museum.
The Corson Family Scholarship
The Corson Family Foundation generously donated a scholarship to the Center for Jewish Art.
Heidi Bransome, the head of the Ancient Jewish Art Section of the Center's Index of Jewish Art, is the recipient of the Corson Family Scholarship. Heidi, born in Tel Aviv in 1970, received her bachelor's degree in Archeology at the Hebrew University, and also took many art courses in her general studies program. She is presently working on her master's degree in Biblical Archeology and her particular interests lie in the anthropological implications of art symbols. At the Center, she has been researching mosaics in ancient synagogues and the symbols in the Beit Sha'arim catacombs. As Section Head, she has been coordinating her section's contribution to the Index's new computer program by finalizing terminology and working on iconography and references.
Ruth Corson researching ancient synagogues together with Heidi Bransome, recipient of the Corson family scholarship.
The Mordechai Narkiss Scholarship
Every year the Center for Jewish Art holds the Mordechai Narkiss Prize Ceremony to recognize outstanding research in Jewish art and to honor the memory of Mordechai Narkiss, the founder and director of the Bezalel National Art Museum which became the core of the Israel Museum. The Prize was established by family and friends of Mordechai Narkiss: his late widow Nassia and his late friends Abe and Rachel Bornstein of Boston, Joseph Stieglitz of Tel Aviv and Dr. Kurt Grunwald of Jerusalem.
This year's recipient is architect Dr. Boris Lekar whose documentation of synagogues all over the world has contributed to our understanding of the architectural heritage of the Jewish people.
Boris made aliyah from Kiev, where he was an established architect, and joined the newly-founded Architecture Section of the Center's Index of Jewish Art as a post-doctoral researcher.
While at the Center, he has documented synagogues in Israel representing various ethnic communities. He has also participated in expeditions to India, Turkey, England and Germany where he measured and sketched the synagogues, and then drew detailed architectural plans upon his return to Jerusalem. In addition to his work as an architect, Boris is a very accomplished painter and has exhibited all over the world.
The Steinhardt Scholarship
Emma Fanner, an immigrant from Russia, is the recipient of the Steinhardt Scholarship.
Emma moved to Israel in 1991 from Vladimir, near Moscow, where she studied art and painting at the teacher's college. She joined a special program at the Hebrew University for new immigrants and upon completion, began her master's degree in 1994 in Art History. Her specialization is the Middle Ages and her master's thesis deals with iconoclasm in the Byzantine Period. In 1994, Emma also joined the research team of the Center for Jewish Art in our Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts section. She has concentrated her efforts in documenting, researching and computerizing part of the Hebrew illuminated manuscript collection, including the "Worms Mahzor", in the National Library at Givat Ram.
Being a practicing artist has given Emma perceptive insight into style and technique for her academic research.
This scholarship was contributed by Michael and Judy Steinhardt of New York whose deep commitment to Israel, to art, and to Jewish education is demonstrated by their involvement with the Israel Museum, by their establishment of the Steinhardt Family Foundation in Israel for projects to help children at risk, and by their intensive activities throughout the United States in all aspects of Jewish education and continuity to name just a few. As collectors of Judaica, they have a knowledge and love of Jewish art.
The Asea Furman Scholarship
The recipient of this year's Asea Furman Scholarship is Sima Hertzfeld, a very talented researcher in the Ritual Objects Section of the Index of Jewish Art. Sima made aliyah from the United States in 1988 and completed her bachelor's degree at the Hebrew University in Medieval and Jewish Art. She began her Master's Degree in the Art History Department of the Hebrew University two years ago and joined the Center's research team then. Sima brings with her an extensive knowledge of ritual and text which is a great asset to her work.
Sima has worked on cataloguing the ritual objects collection in the Ein Harod Museum and has computerized and researched the Judaica collection which the Center documented in the Museum of the Treasures of the Ukraine in Kiev. Sima has also been responsible for the section's extensive slides archive and works with educators and curators to make this resource available.
This annual scholarship was established by Jacobo Furman of Santiago, Chile in memory of his wife Asea. Asea was a staunch supporter and friend of the Center who worked together with her husband in forming an excellent collection of Jewish ceremonial art. The Center is honored to keep the memory of Asea Furman alive through this scholarship.
Lillian and Harry Freedman Scholarship
Lillian and Harry Freedman of Newton, Massachusetts are particularly interested in the Center's efforts to preserve the rich Jewish artistic heritage in Eastern Europe and supported the project to document Jewish art in Poland. This year, the Freedman's have generously granted a scholarship to the Center for Jewish Art and the recipient is Boris Chaimovitch, a talented doctoral student who has carried out extensive research and documentation of synagogues, ritual objects and decorated tombstones in Eastern Europe.
Boris began his search for Jewish cultural roots even before making aliyah when he helped found the St. Petersburg Jewish University, where he served as the director of its Center for Eastern European Diaspora.
Since joining the research team of the Center, he has participated in many of the expeditions to the former Soviet Union including Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Belorussia and the Caucasus Mountains. Boris just led a very successful expedition to Ukraine and Romania where he uncovered and documented many important finds- synagogues, wall paintings and ritual objects. ( See article)
Madeleine and Albert Erlanger Scholarship
Ariella Amar, the head of the Center's Ceremonial and Ritual Objects Section at the Index of Jewish Art, is the recipient of the Madeleine and Albert Erlanger Scholarship. Ariella received her bachelor's degree at the Hebrew University in Art History and Jewish Studies and is presently studying for her master's degree in Art History.
Among the most talented researchers to ever intern at the Center, Ariella's astute knowledge of the sources and her general knowledge of both art and Jewish history is a great asset to her work in documenting and researching ritual objects. Ariella has already participated in many important expeditions of the Center including Morocco, Prague, Poland, Ukraine, Central Asia and India and she is presently planning our upcoming expedition to Tunisia.
Professors Madeleine and Albert Erlanger of Zurich are great enthusiasts of Jewish art and this is the second scholarship which they have bestowed at the Center.