Yury Kanzburg


Artist Statement

For most of my life, I was a Jew in an anti-Semitic environment. The desire to escape, to part from that ambiance, led me to emigration. Emigration opened the path to restitution.

The next step was reading the bible. The Pentateuch revealed to me a deeper understanding of the life and greatness of the people of Israel. Prophets' proclamations introduced me to previously cryptic moments in Jewish history. Poetry inspired faith in beauty and talent.

I was elated, suddenly able to see a reflection of the light of the bible in creations of the great masters of art. Not a single moment in biblical history has been omitted by the artists, from antiquity to present day. Glory to them!

The Book of Kohelet fascinated me with its distinction from the other books of the bible; it contains no stories, nor characters, nor specific events. Rather, it portrays a sage's outlook on life, people, and events. It takes one who has truly experienced, in his own heart, all aspects of life to produce a book like this. As I was reading the succinct phrases, which revealed the depths of human existence, a myriad of spiritual collisions flooded my mind. It was a moment of awe and revelation.

Each verse of this text has become a familiar expression repeated all over the world by human beings who are often ignorant about its source. Thus, I decided to manifest my impressions of the book through the universal language of art. It took many years to complete my work.

I chose a technique that, in my mind, most closely reflects the filigree and elegance of the text.


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