Manage episode 295710754 series 1531659
OLD CITY JEWISH ARTS CENTER Presents: A Golem Sleeps and Wakes in the Mourning
WHERE: Old City Jewish Arts Center, 119 N. 3rd Street, Philadelphia, PA
WHEN: Opening is First Friday, June 4th, 2021 from 5:00pm - 9:00pm.
Gallery open Thursdays 4pm - 8pm, Fridays 11am - 5pm, Saturdays 11am - 8pm, and Sundays 11:00am - 5:00pm and by appointment through July 2nd.
Live gallery performances and artist talk on the evenings of Friday June 25th and July 2nd. Artist talks at 6pm, and Performances at 5:30pm and 7pm.
An interactive exhibit of images, objects, video, and live performance from the theatrical practice of Logan Gabrielle Schulman and Benjamin Behrend will be presented at the Old City Jewish Arts Center (OCJAC) throughout June, and opens the First Friday of June (6/4) at 5pm. It features filmed performances and multimedia art objects from “the theatre of grief,” a series of four theatrical works created over the last three years in the wake of the Tree of Life Synagogue Shooting in Pittsburgh, PA in 2018.
Additionally, OCJAC is ecstatic to present an original performance adapted from rituals within Schulman and Behrend’s theatrical practice over four showings, two per night, on Friday June 25th and July 2nd at 5:30pm and 7pm, featuring live musical accompaniment, dance, and puppetry. Between the two performances, at 6pm, there will be a conversation with the performer, artists Schulman and Behrend, and Aleida Garcia, a Philadelphia community leader, victim advocate, and the founder of the National Homicide Justice Alliance. In describing their aims, Schulman said they hope that their works function to both encourage active reflection in the viewer, as well as activate them to move towards justice and common sense gun legislation. “Sadly, gun violence has become so widespread and commonplace in the U.S. that it is almost too easy for someone to move on with their day after learning of an instance of violence,” says Schulman. “These performances and associated visual works seek to force the audience to reckon with the ripple-effect of each and every single loss — how a single family’s existence is irrevocably upended at the loss of a child.”
Schulman and Behrend’s work prominently features the Golem, a mythical earthen creature from Jewish folk mythology, traditionally understood to be a protector of a persecuted people. In their contemporary take on the fable, “we see the Golem as a failed attempt at solving the problem of violence; what good is a clay hero against a bullet? What good is an old protector against a modern monstrosity?” asks Behrend. In their canon of works, the Golem has been relegated as a shepherd of lost souls, reassigned by G-d to live out the rest of its days in Sheol, the place where the lost souls of the dead are sent, in order to grieve for all the lives it couldn’t save.