Yona Verwer – Amen Institute Artist of the Week

In the Amen Institute’s Fellow Program artists are assigned a portion of the Torah to inspire a visual artwork and they are paired up with a Rabbinic fellow to study this portion with, where together they work through important theological and spiritual questions that come from this biblical text. Eleven Jewish Art Salon members are amongst the 20 selected Fellows.

Video recording here

The presentation of the artworks created in this chevruta took place Sunday May 22, 2022, 1-2pm ET

Parshat Bechukotai:

Yona Verwer – Bechukotai Blessings

Yona Verwer – Bechukotai Curses

Dutch-born Yona Verwer is an artist in New York City. She holds a master’s degree in fine art from the Royal Academy in The Hague, and has shown and curated in galleries and museums nationally and internationally, such as the Andy Warhol Factory, Jerusalem Biennale, the Bronx Museum, Yeshiva University Museum, and the Holocaust Memorial Center. She has been featured in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Ars Judaica, the Huffington Post. Yona is the co-founder/director of the Jewish Art Salon, a NYC-based non-profit for contemporary Jewish visual art.

Though Rabbi Baruch Thaler grew up and received rabbinic ordination in the Chasidic (Chabad-Lubavitch), and has evolved into the the wider world, he still keeps some connection to those roots, in his own way. He most identifies these days with the spirit of Jewish Renewal. He spends a good part of the year organic farming and is currently heading the Nitzozot community in Brooklyn, an egalitarian community of members who transitioned from their ultra-Orthodox (Chareidi) background into the modern world, and who are now expressing their Judaism in new and creative ways. He has coordinated a troubadouring tribe of kindred spirits, called “Home of HoWL” (Holy Wow Love), who created new exciting ways to reexperience the traditions and rituals of yore, bridging heimish hasidism with homie hipsterdom. He received his B.A. (Eng. Lit./Creative Writing) & M.F.A. (Film) from Columbia University.