By Caroline Lagnado, 10/29/2013
Tribeca’s Synagogue for the Arts, which is an architectural masterwork itself, is hosting a new exhibit in its downstairs gallery space, featuring work by Yona Verwer, a Dutch-born, New York-based artist and Heather Stoltz, also a New York artist. Each looks to the topic of vulnerability in New York City.
Verwer, co-founder and co-president of the Jewish Art Salon, a group of artists, curators and critics focused on the Jewish art world, curated the exhibit in addition to showing her own art.
In “City Charms,” which was begun following the September 11th attacks, amulets invoke protection for New York buildings, particularly those on terror watch lists. “Temple Talismans,” a companion project, focuses on protecting at risk synagogues from harm. Verwer was inspired by the zodiac murals (known as mazalot) found in Lower East Side Synagogues to create these paintings. Her canvases are saturated with color and rich with symbols, amulets and mythical signs.
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