Culture News

Everything written about art, music and the celebration of holidays in Israel is published in culture news. Innovative artists, chefs and musicians from around the world that are inspired by the Judaism and the holy land are also featured in culture news. This is the best source on the web to read about Jewish creativity.

DETAIL FROM Michelangelo’s ‘Creation of Adam’ fresco (1509) in the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel.
Creativity for your corona

Michelangelo’s wide artistic range included masterpieces of fresco paintings, such as the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome.

By BENJIE HERSKOWITZ
13/08/2020
Black Sabras - New exhibition shows art and social commitment

Mendes-Flohr’s new exhibition runs until the end of September at the Agripas 12 Gallery near Mahaneh Yehuda.

13/08/2020
Through COVID-19’s pandemic, Jerusalem pianist builds a global family

‘I’ve reinvented myself many times. When I was 50, I hadn’t practiced classical music in 30 years’.

By JENNIFER TZIVIA MACLEOD
13/08/2020
'The Eye Longs for Happiness' - Home away from home

The exhibitors include couple – in life and studies/work – Yul Shif and Nimrod Landsman’s “Since We Are Never Even Here” video creation, which digs deep into the recesses of the Internet.

13/08/2020
Obsessed with art

Jane Labaton - From Heaton, UK to Jerusalem, 1982

By BASIA MONKA
13/08/2020
How well do you really know your parents?

A private investigator faces the question in "Once You Go This Far."

By OLINE H. COGDILL / THE SUN SENTINEL
13/08/2020
President Reuven Rivlin visits the Dead Sea Scrolls
Rivlin visits Dead Sea Scrolls, Israel Museum reopens

The scrolls, which are considered among the oldest Biblical era documents in existence, yielded so much proof of Jewish history.

The beauty of photographing cemeteries

My friend Shira Mushkin photographs tombstones, where she finds a different kind of beauty.

Publishing my father's novel was my alternative to Kaddish

My father left a nearly finished version of that book, The Bell Tower, on his computer, which my brother, Dave, emailed to me following my father’s death.

14/08/2020
Arad Contemporary Arts Center hopes to put city on the global arts scene

The ACAC has become a space for exploring ancient water collecting methods, cherishing social relations and offering a new path forward in Arad’s cultural importance.

A frame from the video installation by artists Roee Rosen and Ruti Sela.
Marseille Jamilla parodies the painful truth of the Arab-Israeli conflict

By using humor as their weapon, Rosen and Sela are forcing gallery-goers to ponder the policies of various modern-day leaders.

12/08/2020
THE ARTWORK of Adi Fluman on view at the CCA
Two exhibitions at Tel Aviv's CCA challenge notions of memory

Adi Fluman and Irma Blank’s techniques and themes couldn’t seem more different. A closer look reveals that both produced art that asks, through objects and words, how memories come into being.

11/08/2020
Lions in Ramat Gan Safari celebrate World Lion Day

While other animals are hunted for things such as food, fur or their fangs, lions are often hunted by people who are trying to prove their bravery to others.

By OMRI RON
10/08/2020
Summer activities for whole family organized by KKL-JNF

In order to allow people to go out during this summer, the KKL-JNF has organized several activities for the people of Israel.

Amid coronavirus crisis, Israel Festival to adapt and move forward

Social distancing and online events won’t prevent the September gala from going ahead

09/08/2020
Tel Aviv to open 'sail-in' floating theater in Hayarkon Park boating lake

The move follows the reopening of the city's legendary drive-in theater, and will be held in accordance with the Health Ministry's 'Purple Ribbon' standards.

09/08/2020
Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey in a scene from the 1987 film "Dirty Dancing."
‘Dirty Dancing’ sequel starring Jennifer Grey announced

Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer confirmed the news on Thursday.

By GABE FRIEDMAN/JTA
08/08/2020
Israeli composer behind two of Muimui Guitargirl's viral music videos

The song is the second produced with Loretta Kay Feld, the first being 'Keep America Singing,' and the fifth released on Muimui Guitargirl's YouTube channel.

Israeli TV show 'Tehran' goes global

The producers are hoping that Tehran can draw an international audience once it debuts on Apple and that it will become a talked-about hit the way Fauda and Shtisel have.

Gesher Theater presents its productions via Facebook

The Gesher Theater is using the current coronavirus crisis as an opportunity to present past productions as well as more recent ones, hoping to entertain its fans and to attract new audiences.

SHALOM ASSAYAG (left) and Amos Tamam star in ‘Manayak.’
'Manayak': Israel’s next big hit

'Manayak' is about corruption within the police force.

‘The Commitments’
Alan Parker films featured on Israeli television following his passing

'Manayak' is a gritty police drama running Sundays, Monday at 9:15 p.m.

JONA LAKS, survivor of Dr. Josef Mengele’s twins experiments, and granddaughter Lee Aldar
Mengele’s unethical research was part of existing beliefs, practice

Mengele’s background, the study of medicine and anthropology, was well suited to Nazi ideology.

By JANET LEVY
06/08/2020
THE CANARY Wharf tower in London’s East End.
Jews breaking into the arts

Creating a parallel world to traditional English theater

By COLIN SHINDLER
06/08/2020
OREN SAYS, ‘Ben, can you make the mud cake?’ It’s really mug cake.
Dirty deeds

Ben really should get up and have something to eat, but... he’s a soldier now. He’s earned the sleep.

8 incredible Israeli shows you may not have heard of

It’s no secret that for more than a decade now, Hollywood has turned toward Israel to look for new show formats that could be adapted well for English-language audiences.

By BRANDON SCHUSTER/JTA
06/08/2020
MIRI BEN-ARI and Young D: "I’m obsessed with African music, I love it." August 2020
An African beat from violinist Miri Ben-Ari

Ben-Ari, who likes to work in all genres of music, is currently exploring African sounds.

JIMBO J – rapper/actor Omer Habaron
Nacht Foundation to fund 80 artists to recreate Israeli musical classics

The roster takes in almost every genre and style on offer across the broad spectrum of the Israeli pop, rock and ethnic music.

03/08/2020
A drawing from Hadar Mordechay’s book.
Exhibition at the Musrara Art School in Jerusalem: an undecided journey

Grappling with topics such as the urban experience and sexual self-expression, some of the projects hit the aesthetic mark while others remain a mere promise.

03/08/2020
Shalom Assayag
Police drama ‘Manayak’: Israel’s next big hit on TV

The channel’s new series, the gripping and suspenseful Manayak (Hebrew slang for snitch or rat), is about corruption within the police force, and is perfectly in tune with the current moment.

Israelis outraged as a kilogram of avocados can reach up to NIS 100

Many in the report have expressed their anger at the high prices currently presented on the market, with some people interviewed saying most of the product is unusable.

By OMRI RON
02/08/2020
Keying up for Israel's first online piano festival

“The PianoWebFest is all about international, online communication.”

By SARAH HERSHENSON
30/07/2020
Netta Barzilai promises surprise as 'Bassa Sababa' gets 100m. views

The singer has promised fans a special surprise now that the goal has been met.

30/07/2020
Rubinstein piano competition slated for 2021

The competition, to take place in Tel Aviv, will be held under the artistic direction of pianist Ariel Cohen.

It Must Be Love - A new exhibition created by artists for their children

Any idea that this is a lightweight venture designed to titillate children and their parents is immediately stopped in its tracks.

29/07/2020
Vocalist Noya Sol performs at the online International Blues Day event

Listening to Noya Sol, even after just a couple of bars into whichever number she is singing, conveys irrefutably that she is a roots die-hard.

29/07/2020
TV highlights of the week: Love stories, New France and Mob matters

If you feel that Tu Be’av is just an annoying way to make single people feel bad for an extra day, you can watch Sunset Blvd., which is showing on Yes 3 at 6:25 p.m. on August 4.

‘Radioactive’ - A tale of love and fallout

Marie Curie was the first woman to win the Nobel Prize, the first person and only woman to win it twice, and the only person to win it in two different fields.

By KATIE WALSH
29/07/2020
Outline Fesitval - Lines drawn across the city

While not all the exhibitors are residents of the capital, there is plenty in the way of locally fueled vibes across the 13 exhibitions incorporated in the festival purview.

29/07/2020
Morality - Rabbi Sacks discusses moral issues in today's world

Sacks turns the reading of such an inflammatory topic into a discussion one can honestly ponder upon.

In the early 20th century, Zionists rallied around Tisha B’Av

To this day, Tisha B’Av is a day for mourning these national tragedies. Traditionally observant Jews mark it by fasting and refraining from worldly pleasures.

By ZACK ROTHBART
29/07/2020
The Vertigo Dance Company performs ‘Birth of the Phoenix.’
Assessing the drive-in option for live performance arts

Among the brave pioneers is the Vertigo Dance Company.

By ORI J. LENKINSKI
30/07/2020
British rapper Wiley
Israeli British rapper writes song in response to Wiley's antisemitism

"I hope I can give people in the community a sense that someone is standing for them."

07/08/2020
Film camera (illustrative)
How Israeli filmmakers are managing to work during the coronavirus crisis

While hundreds of thousands of entertainment-industry workers have been badly hurt by the novel coronavirus crisis’s impact on film and television here, a lucky few have found employment.

New TV show The New Moroccans tackles old issues in Israeli society

Ben-Haim always intrigued me. His TV reports about the haredi (ultra-Orthodox) in general and Shas in particular have always been highly informative and produced with deep insight and empathy.

The Nazareth Ramada Olivie Hotel reopens offering special food weekends

Boasting amazing traditional bakeries and tea houses, as well as modern day chef restaurants, and lively street life, Nazareth holds a promise for better and more peaceful life in our region.

By NERIA BARR
26/07/2020
Artist Carmel Ilan puts paper on the fine art map

It is only in the past decade that paper artists have received the credit and attention they deserve.

By ORI J. LENKINSKI
23/07/2020
Photographer Alex Levac’s new offering - Yesh Matsav

Isn’t that what the photographer does? He or she documents “the situation,” naturally with their own personal creative slant.

23/07/2020
Shacharit sevice takes place over Zoom
Jews are flocking to online classes during the pandemic

Craving connection and with time on their hands, Jews have been attending online courses with intense devotion.

By PENINA BEEDE/JTA
23/07/2020
A timely, relatable and fascinating children’s book

'The Day the Animals Triumphed over the Coronas' was written with a purpose.

By NEICHU MAYER
29/07/2020
The Banai family: from vegetable market sellers to Israel Prize winners

The story of the Banai family and their impact on Israeli culture

By MIKKI SHANA
29/07/2020
Alex Levac's exhibition includes contemporary full-color snaps from desert expanses used as IDF trai
Alex Levac’s iconic photos go on display

Yesh Matsav opened at the Basis for Art and Culture gallery in Herzliya Pituach last Friday.

21/07/2020
Rooms next to the terrace face either the Old City or the hotel's garden.
Forget traveling abroad, the Inbal Hotel has it all

It’s about time Israelis take advantage of luxury hotels right in their own backyards

Kayaking on the Jordan River with Abu-Kayak
Taly's Travel: A wet summer in southern Golan, Kinneret

The Southern Golan Heights area offers an opportunity to get some fresh air and cool breeze, enjoy some wet activities and good food while staying safe.

By TALY SHARON
18/07/2020
starcatcher
Horoscopes for Av 5779: Now is the summer of our discontent

"When Av returns, we diminish joy."

By LORELAI KUDE
18/07/2020
Kfar Hanokdim, Judean desert
Star-spotting in the desert

Any season is a great time to get over to the desert.

18/07/2020
Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey in a scene from the 1987 film "Dirty Dancing."
A new ‘Dirty Dancing’ film is potentially in the works

Lionsgate holds distribution rights to the original Dirty Dancing films, which include the 2004 prequel Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.

By MARCY OSTER/JTA
17/07/2020
The influence of Mike’s Place founder Mike Vigoda lives on – appreciation

Rest in Peace, Mike, and thanks for all you have done.

By DOV HAMMER
16/07/2020
A song of support in the time of coronavirus and the 'three weeks'

"I think that's very relevant to the current situation. In times like this we all need to remember that we can rely on those around us for a helping hand."

17/07/2020
Ancient water cistern in the Negev.
Do some cisterns in the Negev date back to the time of Abraham?

"Why did those ancient populations invest a lot of resources in quarrying and digging water cisterns in a sparse area without natural vegetation?”

TV Highlights: Bright Borgen, crazy comedies and Gallagher goes solo

If you’re looking for something a little more relatable, try Borgen, a Danish series that already ran in Israel a few years ago, but which now is on Netflix with English translation.

Turning a house into a home

It isn’t something you can buy, no matter how rich you are. It springs from the heart, and we just call it love.

Vacationing in Eilat - Part II

Eilat boasts of a myriad of cultural gems that many Israeli tourists don’t even know about.

By MEITAL SHARABI
15/07/2020
Sarah Silverman
Jews use #JewishPrivilege hashtag to focus on tragedy, triumph

Jews worldwide have reclaimed the #JewishPrivilege hashtag from white supremacists, using it to tell their family's stories.

Jerusalem Film Festival
Jerusalem Film Festival postponed until December

The Jerusalem Film Festival was originally planned for mid-July but was postponed until August due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

De Niro to TAU students: COVID worse than 9/11

The virtual meeting with the Oscar winning actor and director was organized by Ido Aharoni, a graduate of TAU, former Israeli consul in New York and currently a lecturer at New York University.

Members of Chesed Shel Emes, a burial society based in Brooklyn, transport a body for burial at the
New Yiddish horror film trailer shows a Jewish burial gone terribly wrong

Much of “The Vigil” appears to be in Yiddish, and it stars actors who have previously appeared in Jewish-themed productions.

By PHILISSA CRAMER/JTA
13/07/2020
Hebrew Scouts nearly shut down during COVID-19 crisis, ‘unthinkable’

After one century of offering informal education to Hebrew youth across the country, the movement faces extreme uncertainty due to government actions.

IAC co-founder: Jewish and Israel education should be affordable for everyone

The 'Zoom Out' global e-summit on July 13-14, brings together international educators and EdTech executives with the aim of re-imagining the future of education in the coronavirus era.

Habima National Theater releases new video celebrating theaters' role

The video features a number of Israel's most prominent celebrities.

By OMRI RON
12/07/2020
Film (illustrative)
In ‘The Tobacconist,’ a young Austrian befriends Freud during WWII

The German-language film with English subtitles will be released July 10 via Kino Lorber, which shares revenue with local theaters.

By CURT SCHLEIER/JTA
10/07/2020
Amihai Grosz: From Berlin with viola

Now first principal viola player of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Jerusalem-born Grosz is a seasoned campaigner.

09/07/2020
German Jewish poet brought back to life in a new online platform

Else Lasker-Schüler is considered to be one of the greats of German poetry, a bohemian artist who corresponded with many of the most prominent cultural figures of her time.

The huppah - a beloved object of Jewish art

The huppah is considered a symbol of God’s love above the married couple. The traditional huppah features an open sky above acknowledging God as Creator, who infuses marriage with deep spirituality.

By TOBEY YANAI
09/07/2020
What makes some overcome evil, while others are coopted and destroyed?

In Keep Saying Their Names, Simon Stranger tries to postpone the second death of Hirsch Komissar, his great-grandfather-in-law, a Norwegian Jew murdered by the Gestapo in 1942.

By GLENN C. ALTSCHULER
09/07/2020
Guy Stern - From the Nazis to military intelligence in World War II

The so-called Ritchie Boys have been celebrated in books and documentaries for their critical contribution to military intelligence during World War II.

Vacationing in Eilat - Part I

Even though I’ve been making a great effort recently to avoid crowded and noisy places, I decided to check out what Israel’s southernmost city has to offer.

By MEITAL SHARABI
09/07/2020
The story of the synagogue and the stamp

The synagogue has been featured on postage stamps to note historical events and to demonstrate Israel’s relationship with other countries.

By HARVEY D. WOLINETZ
08/07/2020
Vienna: A weekend escape

Nosh on schnitzel, brush up on Freud and be dazzled by Beethoven.

By SHARON FEIEREISEN
08/07/2020
Beit Hatfutsot previews core exhibition

The new core exhibition will expand the museum’s exploration of Jewish culture, identity and spirituality.

Piris Eliyahu
For Piris Eliyahu, the music is blowing in the wind

“The wind inspires creativity as it blows across the desert.”

08/07/2020
A member of the ALEH Negev gardening team tends to the Rhoda Fischer Memorial Garden at ALEH Negev-N
Memorial garden will provide equal employment for special needs people

The memorial garden at ALEH Negev-Nahalat Eran has been dedicated to Rhoda Fischer.

Arik Ze’evi: A model of success

Ze’evi trained in the local Judo club in his neighborhood, together with his older brother, Roni, who was the club’s first local gold medal winner in the Israeli Judo Championships.

By RUBENS ZADEL
16/07/2020
A Family Story: Celebrating our roots and connections

“All of us has a story that defines us and makes us realize we are part of a bigger picture. We are blessed to be part of the family of the Jewish people."

Israel Sinfonietta to perform live concert Saturday night

Internationally-known pianist Asaf Kleinman joins from his home in Austria.

A drawing of a music note being strangled by a noose
Artists protest closure by questionably using noose image

The protesters were either unaware of or decided to ignore the revived connotations the noose has in the current racial struggles taking place in the United States.

08/07/2020
Winner of the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest, Netta Barzilai of Israel, takes part at the "Orange Carp
Netta Barzilai removes 'triggering' noose imagery from Instagram

Barzilai had posted the picture — a white note on a black background — on Monday night and removed it on Tuesday morning.

By MARCY OSTER/JTA
08/07/2020
Soldiers from the Nahal Haredi unit, the ultra-Orthodox battalion in the Israel Defense Forces
Secular Jews are starting to understand the haredi Orthodox

The tension between secular and religious Israeli society has existed since before the country was founded and remains a contentious societal dividing line.

By RABBI AVI SHAFRAN/JTA
08/07/2020
Israel’s storyteller - Tom Segev's revealing biography of David Ben-Gurion

Tom Segev's newest book, A State at Any Cost, is a biography of Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, and has sparked quite a bit of controversy in Israel.

By LINDA GRADSTEIN , AVRAHAM AVI-HAI
16/07/2020
Esteban Alterman: A valiant photographer

Esteban Alterman, who died at home in Jerusalem on June 20, was a warrior and a perfectionist. A brilliant photographer, he battled his illness and continued shooting until he could no longer.

By AVI HOFFMANN
16/07/2020
SETH ROGAN stars (twice) in ‘American Pickle.’
Yiddish hipster heaven awaits with Seth Rogen’s ‘An American Pickle’

The movie was directed by Brandon Trost, a cinematographer making his feature-film directorial debut, and was written by Saturday Night Live writer Simon Rich.

The Market House Hotel
Market House Hotel: A jewel of Jaffa

The Market House only reopened to guests on May 28, after a period of closure due to coronavirus restrictions, but hopes to make up for lost time.

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