Dedicated to covering the visual arts community in Connecticut.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Artist reception at Slifka Center at Yale this Thursday

Rabinowitz Gallery at the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale University
80 Wall St., New Haven, (203) 432-1134
Photographs by Judy Sirota Rosenthal: Reverence in Bali: Ancient Culture, Modern Translation
May 20—Aug. 15, 2008
Artist's reception: Thurs., June 5, 4:30—6:30 p.m. (Presentation and discussion at 5:30 p.m.)

Press release

A show of Judy Sirota Rosenthal's photographs of the people and culture of Bali will open at the Rabinowitz Gallery at the Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale University on May 20, 2008. Sirota Rosenthal spent three weeks in Bali during the summer of 2006 and was interested in how this ancient culture was meeting the challenges of modernity. Sirota Rosenthal, who now spends the majority of her time doing photography, had for years done sculptural, installation and graphic art with spiritual themes inspired greatly by the Jewish tradition. She had done cross-cultural explorations particularly in the use of fabric by a number of cultures as a means of making prayer.

Sirota Rosenthal was drawn to the volcanic island by stories heard that suggested that everyday life in Bali possessed a singular beauty and dignity. She was drawn to the faces, the landscape and the work of the artisans. She was curious about how the people of Bali have responded to their lives in the shadow of unpredictable volcanoes and and how they demonstrate respect (even reverence) for natural forces—a contrast to the Western tendency to imply that humans can overcome natural forces.

Through introductions by a respected figure in the Balinese community, Sirota Rosenthal was able to gain unusual access to ceremonies and rituals that not all visitors see. She was able to capture very close up the exquisite details of both the ritual objects of sacred ceremonies as well as everyday commercial street-life.

Her photography is humanistic in the richest way. She has clearly formed relationships with the people she has photographed as evidenced by the openness of their faces and gazes. Her photographs offer striking juxtapositions of the old and the new.

Viewers will find themselves enriched by Sirota Rosenthal's photographic eye and sense of visual adventure. She has rendered the range and seeming contradictions of Bali in a provoking and affirming way.

Sirota Rosenthal has received grants from the Connecticut Commission on the Arts, and the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture. Her work has been shown in numerous museums and galleries in North America, including Yeshiva University Art Museum, Aldrich Museum, Chesterwood Museum, the Skirball Museums, and Spertus Museum. Her work is in private collections around the country. Judy does event, family/portrait, and documentary photography in New York and New England, and is based in Hamden, Connecticut. She also travels with families and organizations to destinations where an event or project is taking place. Judy integrates the wisdom from Kabbalistic, Buddhist, Hindu, and Shamanic practices, in her healing practice, also based in Hamden.

There will be a reception for the artist on June 5, 4:30—6:30, with a presentation at 5:30, at the Slifka Center, 80 Wall Street, New Haven, CT.


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