Celebrating 50 years of a united Jerusalem, Friendship Circle of Central Jerusalem held its second annual Art of Friendship event, entitled “Jerusalem through a Golden Lens.”
Participants with unique challenges were accompanied by their teen buddies and a cadre of 18 generous and talented professional photographers to various locations around Jerusalem.
With encouragement and guidance, the children were able to capture the splendor of our magical city, as seen through their own eyes. The second stage of the project saw the children working with 12 acclaimed artists to enhance their photographs, using techniques such as painting, collage, mosaic, gold leaf and paper mache. The photographers and artist mentors gave selflessly of their time and talent, promoting self-confidence and joy among their protégé’s.
On Sunday of Chol Hamoed Sukkot, friends and supporters of Friendship Circle Jerusalem from around the world attended the Art of Friendship Gala and Auction.
128 beautiful and vibrant pieces of art were on display on the walls of Beit Achim Chassid in the German Colony. Each picture was a masterpiece, created by youngsters whose personal perception and unique sensibility leapt off the canvas and invited the viewers into their world.
A grand reception took place in the sukkah prior to the auction with delicious hor d’oeuvres and cocktails. The Portnoy brothers and singer Eli Marcus created an uplifting and joyous atmosphere with live music.
One of Friendship Circle’s stars, Ariella Kut, regaled the audience with her flute. Followed by greetings from Fleur Hassan-Nahoum, a member of Jerusalem City Council. Director Chanie Canterman thanked all those who volunteered for their time and efforts to organize the event and the year-round kind partners.
Chanie likened the artist mentors and photographers to diamond cutters. Not knowing what the outcome would be, they worked on the diamonds, namely the children and their artwork, confident their apprentices would succeed in creating beautiful works of art.
“Naoki Higashida,” related Chanie, “an extraordinary Japanese author who has autism, reveals in his fascinating book, ‘Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8’, that a lack of understanding for the abilities of individuals with special needs, is what ultimately holds them back.
“Friendship Circle Central Jerusalem recognizes the intrinsic worth of individuals uniquely challenged and strives to offer them the social and recreational tools with which to achieve success. Imagination and creativity is what has led the way for the ‘Art of Friendship 2017’ journey. The mentors and protégées achieved success with aplomb,” concluded Chanie.
Led by auctioneer Rafael Sait, the auction part of the evening then went into full swing as piece after piece was sold to the highest bidder. Many of the Friendship Circle youngsters and their parents were in attendance, overjoyed and heart-warmed to see their imaginative efforts being so well appreciated.
Bidders were at the edge of their seats waiting to purchase their favorite pieces. At one point, curators Raphael Marrache’ and Vera Rosen invited the guests to remove their favorite pieces from the wall and purchase them. This prompted a flurry of activity as scores of participants sprang to their feet and began to gingerly take down the coveted creations and line up to pay for them, some with two or three pieces under their arm. Many pictures were sold at the auction and many sold at their posted sale price. The atmosphere was electric!
Heartfelt thanks go to the kind donors of the evening: Jacob Ner David of Jezreel Valley Winery and Elie Wurtman of Bat Shlomo Vineyards, Super Moshava and Superdeal supermarkets. Special thanks to the Blumenfeld, Lifschitz, Levinson and Bermeister families for their kind contributions to the event. An exquisite coffee table book was generously donated by The Fogel family.
The event may have passed but the echoes of the beauty of that night continue to reverberate as friends and supporters visit fcjerusalem’s website, viewing and purchasing the beautiful pieces that made up “Jerusalem Through a Golden Lens.”
Would you consider being a buyer too? See the artwork at fcjerusalem.org