500 Judaica: Innovative Contemporary Ritual Art
By Ray Hemachandra and juror Daniel Belasco
Wolpert Richard’s brilliance lies in the dishes’ shape. When they are empty, the dishes are pyramids, lending the top of the tray the look of an ancient Egyptian landscape. But the pyramids are hollowed out, as are the slots beneath them, so they can be flipped upside down to fit into the tray and to hold the Passover foods. As the title suggests, Passover is all about overturning the slavery that fueled the creation of the pyramids and replacing it with freedom. It’s hard to imagine a better contemporary aesthetic addition to the intentionally-complicated juxtapositions of reclining and saltwater, wine and bitter herbs, then overturning pyramids and filling them with the Passover hors d’oeuvres.
About the Author: Menachem Wecker, who blogs on faith and art for the Houston Chronicle at http://blogs.chron.com/iconia, welcomes comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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