So much Judaic culture is rooted in beautiful tradition. There are so many specific concerns and rituals in the Jewish culture that art has often spent a lot of time reflecting those values. As a result much of the world of Judaic art finds it’s self being tailored to older stylistic forebears and more traditional forms of expression. Yet in the hyper democratized age we live in where the worlds of culture are exploding and overlapping keeping hold on that strict old style has become particularly tricky and seems sort of besides the point. There is so much potential for new creative ways to explore those old traditions, be it through new musical forms like rock n’ roll and hip hop or through video and film work not to mention new forms of painting and print making like abstract and especially pop art.Pop art in many ways seems particularly well accustomed to making for great Jewish artwork. The theories espoused by some of the greatest artists of the last 50 years were that repetitive imagery could make pieces more available and in their ubiquity uniquely meaningful. In the world of Jewish culture where every man is expected to have a yamaka and every door is to have a mezuzah that repetitive sense of meaning is even more special. Making those sort of symbols into boldly colored reminders of religion and spirituality is one of the driving philosophical thrusts of contemporary Jewish art.Many young Jewish artists are finding ways to utilize splashy colors, digital affects, and pop culture motifs like comic books and graffiti to express their fundamentally Jewish ideas and ideals, and it is opening up the culture to new eyes and ears and spreading the sacred words and work beyond the traditional Judaic channels. Of course the balance of reverence and modernity has always been a force for clashes within all religious factions. The current wave of Jewish artwork being revitalized is mostly surprising for how open any and all parties have seemed about embracing it. No longer do older religious leaders sit around frowning on these new artistic displays. Instead leaders have embraced these new artistic expressions and their ability to incorporate tradition while engaging the youth.The hip makeover currently underfoot in contemporary Jewish art is a meaningful movement that will likely have decades of ramifications. The opening of the artistic door to allow for this pop culture meets traditional values crossover is likely to inform both art and religion for a long time. It could also lead to many younger people feeling more at ease within their religious institutions.
Contemporary Jewish Art With Traditional Jewish Values
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