Many times, when I am doing my Jewish papercut art, the act of creating it becomes a meditation.
The piece "B'tzelim Elohim" is based on a midrash that says that the four letters of the tetragrammaton - yud, hey, vav, hey - the unpronounceable name of God, actually make a human form when stacked vertically. As I was designing and cutting that piece, I was thinking, "What does this mean, b'tzelim elohim, really? What would happen if, when we saw another person, we believed we were seeing God?
The same happens every time I do a piece of papercut art of a Torah portion, like the "Ha'azinu" piece. When a piece of Torah is requested as a piece of Jewish papercut art, I open the chumash and read the portion, think about it, and let the visuals float to the top.
These are the kinds of things that happen when an artist works with his or her hands and mind. The act of creating something out of real objects, taking real time and real creative energy, connect us to something deeper, and higher. I believe in my heart that people want to own hand-made things for that reason, to be part of the cycle of creation.
This video, an interview with "maker" Renate Hiller, expresses this idea of creation in service to something divine - and to each other - more beautifully than I ever could.
Whether you are an artist, a cook, a gardener, a writer, or someone who sews, make something today.
To ask about a gift of papercut art, click here.
To subscribe to the Hebrica "Snippets" blog, enter your email address at the bottom of the page.
Copyright Notice: The contents of this site are copyrighted by Hebrica Judaic Art, all rights reserved. Republication by permission only, with a link back and the source of the republication clearly noted. Excerpts, commentary, and fair use applications should be accompanied by a link back to the original content on this site.