Baruch Nachshon was born in Haifa, Israel in 1939. He grew up in a religious and Zionist home ideology that Israel is the Biblical homeland of the Jewish people). From the age of eleven to eighteen, he studied art with Solomon Neroni, who was Paul Cezanne’s only student. From Neroni, Nachshon learned how to express holiness through his art.
He became attracted to the world of the Chassidim (
Entrusting him with the exalted mission of bringing art to its supreme fulfillment. Nachshon turned down other scholarships that involved taking courses in sculpting replicas of the human
Since 1967, Nachshon, his wife, and ten children live
near the ancient city of Hebron, in Israel. Nachshon, with six other courageous families, reestablished a Jewish settlement there called Kiryat Arba, after the Six Day War. He paints symbols of light, life, and scenes from Israel, and fantastical moments in time. Oriental and Western Art are reflected in Nachshon’s style. His work is expressive, delightful, and visionary. Inspired by Biblical, Midrash, and Kabbalistic themes, which have never before been attempted in a visionary mode of expression, his paintings pulsate with joy, harmony, and balance, as he expresses
Nachshon’s work expresses the soul of ancient and modern Israel. “You should try in the future to bring out the simple meaning of the ‘text – teachings from our ancestors and real
“He also the inner dimensions of Judaism and Chassidus, which is based on the Zohar, r.e. index.
Nachshon does enjoy the privacy and seclusion that living in a settlement town away from the big cities in Israel affords him. Yet he still maintains close ties and concerns with the citizens of Israel. He is a visionary who studies the Torah and is able to translate these ideas onto canvas.
2&5 Two questions were addressed here, one concerning
if Biblical prohibitions affected his work, and the other
question about an ethical code being
the subject of Biblical prohibitions, I was told to avoid using a model, and not to create any art that could serve as idol worship, and also not to make a complete sculpture of a human body. From
special way of using
Nachshon mentions three biblical prohibitions, that of avoiding using a model (assuming this to be a nude figure), not making any art that could serve as idol worship, and to avoid making a complete sculpture of a human being. “Art
that is used in the form of the
3. On the subject of rabbinical authorities influencing the artist’s work, Nachshon is
4. The images that Nachshon excludes in his work are the usage of nudes and the symbol of the cross.
6. When asked about unique distinctions that exist in his work because he is an observant Jew, Nachshon states: “Because I am a practicing Jew, I do my best to increase light, as I see it as the most important reason for our life.” “I have also been influenced by readings of Holy Scriptures, and listening to melodies of the praying in the minyan (
Nachshon studies the Kabbalah, which is the mystical aspects of Judaism. His
7. In response to the question asking whether
The Torah is
expressions, sometimes by light or by covering
expounds that there is limitless symbolism possible to
express the magnificence of G-d. One of Nachshon’s methods
to reflect on the power of the
light and abstraction in his paintings, showing forceful
movements and burning colors.
8. When questioned concerning the position physical beauty has in Judaism, Nachshon responds:
Physical beauty has been deemphasized in Judaism,
as King Solomon said that all the honor of a woman is within the house. Art that is used in the form of the human body takes the heart of people toward idol worship. This increases sexual feeling which brings people to flesh desires, which spoil the purity of the mind and bring people away from a healthy society and
far from the Creator. Adam and Eve used to live naked before the famous sin, at that time they were
The real beauty of the human
Nachshon mentions that physical beauty in its raw form takes people towards physical desires, and away from a healthy society, and a belief in G-d. In his opinion beauty needs to be meshed with all the multi-facets of a human being to be fully realized.
9/10. Nachshon simultaneously responds to these questions when asked what the viewer is supposed to be gaining from his
While making art I really don’t think about my
viewer, I see my visions lifting the soul of all kinds of people,
of light and mood elevation. I’m grateful to G-d that
he gave me such a gift to be close to Him and bring people to this same feeling. I am making genuine art,
in a manner consistent with the Jewish tradition of holiness.
Nachshon wants to add to his viewers’ lives by uplifting their spirits with the imagery of his paintings. The researcher finds Nachshon’s work to be fun, fantastical, vibrant, and happy which is expressed in his painting Hebron, City of the Patriarchs. He speaks of music as being a key inspiration for him, and the viewer can pick up the energy, rhythm, and movement in his work as his art sings with energy. Bringing people his artwork at the Rebbe’s advice is what Nachshon considers to be his mission in life. He feels that his art is
After consulting with rabbis on the topic of Biblical prohibitions, Nachshon was told to avoid using a model, not to make any art that could serve as idol worship, and not to make a complete sculpture of a human body. These prohibitions directed him to develop an innovative
His ethical beliefs are directed by Torah law. In his
Remarkably, Nachshon is the only known observant artist that has been financially aided by a rabbi to pursue his career in the fine arts. Rabbi Menachem Schneerson saw in Nachshon’s talent his ability to impact the Jewish
Nachshon relates that the Torah describes G-d as having no form. He explains that there is enormous symbolism possible in the expression of G-d’s magnificence and glory in the fine arts, without attributing a physical image to G-d.
He projects that he wants his visions to lift the souls of both Jews and Gentiles, and bring people closer to their belief in G-d. The Torah acts as his guide and brings out the inner dimensions, light, and mood elevation, that is his perception of the beautiful
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