Shofar of Freedom
Behar (Leviticus 25:1-26:2 )
"Yovel," 2014, acrylic on canvas, 70 x 90 cm.
You shall proclaim [with] the shofar blasts, in the seventh month, on the tenth of the month; on the Day of Atonement, you shall sound the shofar throughout your land. You shall sanctify the fiftieth year, and proclaim freedom throughout the land for all who live on it. It shall be a Jubilee year for you. (Leviticus 25:9-10)
Once every fifty years, shofars were sounded heralding in the year of Yovel/Jubilee. The blasts proclaimed liberty in the land, a time when all slaves were free to go, and all properties were to be returned to their original owners.
The feeling of joy and liberation that resonates through the land is expressed in the painting by the abstract shapes of the shofars as they rise in golden swirls of paint, as their notes shoot across the canvas in streams of golden dots. The figures at the bottom are comprised of splashes of paint and transparent overlays of color, creating a sense of movement. Both the vibrancy and energy of the colors and gestures convey a feeling of celebration.
Today we no longer have a Jubilee, but we continue to sound the shofar every Yom Kippur as a commemoration of what once was, and also to express our anticipation of the Great Shofar that will one day soon herald an era of peace.