Jewish Life

The Jewish Life program focuses on grants that contribute to the strengthening of communities and their leaders in North America and in Israel.

In North America, the Foundation supports the strengthening of emerging communities, particularly among younger Jewish Americans and between Jewish and Muslim Americans. In Israel, we support the strengthening of underserved communities, Jewish and Arab, with a focus on young Israelis.

We are interested in intentional communities – people in a face-to-face network of affinity and diversity, belonging, and meaning. These communities are activated by their leaders’ and participants’ Jewish values and engaged in sustained activity that deepens their commitment to being responsible for one another and to making a shared, positive difference in the world. Newly interpreting the traditional privileging of community in Jewish history and practice, such initiatives are a creative response to the unique circumstances of 21st-century life.

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Featured Project: This Place: 12 Views

“This Place” is a multiyear arts project initiated by photographer Frederic Brenner in 2008. Brenner invited 11 internationally acclaimed photographers for months-long residencies to explore Israel and the West Bank as both place and metaphor.

As Brenner explains, “Israel is a place where every single person is the other to somebody else.”

The project’s goal is to create an enduring body of work that reaches beyond the familiar narratives of this much-contested place to reveal Israel’s rifts, dissonance, and paradox in the distinctive vocabularies of master artists. “This Place” is an opportunity to offer art whose diverse lenses can provoke a vital new kind of conversation in a visual age.

In addition to Brenner, the participating photographers are: Wendy Ewald, Martin Kollar, Josef Koudelka, Jungjin Lee, Gilles Peress, Fazal Sheikh, Stephen Shore, Rosalind Solomon, Thomas Struth, Jeff Wall, and Nick Waplington. In Phase I, the Revson Foundation supported the apprenticeships of young Israeli photographers who served as field assistants to the artists.

In 2014, the project embarked on Phase II, the global dissemination of the artwork through an integrated plan of exhibitions, a comprehensive catalogue and monographs by each of the participating artists, public and education programs, a campus initiative, and an ambitious digital initiative that immerses visitors in the work and process of the photographers through images, text, video portraits, and interviews.

“This Place,” influenced by such historic bodies of work as the Mission Héliographique in 19th-century France and the Farm Security Administration in the United States, also documents the process of its own creation.

To see images of the collected work, go to the home page of “This Place”:

http://www.this-place.org

For images by individual photographers and videos of their discussing their work at the Prague opening in fall 2014, click on each photographer’s name.

To watch two short films of Jeff Wall and Jungjin Lee on site as they demonstrate how they choose their images, click on their names and scroll down to “short film.”

For books and catalogue, see:

See: http://www.this-place.org/books

A video of Frederic Brenner’s exploration of his vision can be viewed here:

https://vimeo.com/114554766

Exhibitions:

DOX Center for Art

October 24, 2014
to March 2, 2015
Prague, Czech Republic

Tel Aviv Museum of Art

May 14, 2015
to September 6, 2015
Tel Aviv, Israel

Norton Museum of Art

October 15, 2015
to January 15, 2016
West Palm Beach, Florida

Brooklyn Museum of Art

February 12, 2016
to June 5, 2016
Brooklyn, New York