The goal with my artwork -- map collage -- is to make the particular universal and to focus on combining imagery that illustrates passages from the Torah with ecological, technological and scientific concepts.
I strive to find common ground between these seemingly disparate realms. Maps that I incorporate into collages may be part of the regional, geographic, geological or religious narratives. Usually there is more than one story a map can convey. My work also has more than one story to tell. I may be both trying to describe the curve of the earth on a flat piece of paper and using maps to blur the boundaries between the natural and the manufactured/technological world, representing simultaneously land, sky, water and architecture.
My use of contemporary images, symbols and metaphors while working with Torah stories shows the adaptability and applicability of the stories across the millennia.
As an example, in a recent collage, titled "Pe'ah: the Corners of Our Fields". A passage from Parsha Kedoshim invokes farmers to share grain from the corners of their field for gleaners. Rather than a field of traditional grain, this field "grows" solar power, inspired by a solar power company in the Negev that donates power to worthy organizations. Some viewers will appreciate the Biblical aspect of the collage while others will relate to the ecological and charitable aspects.
Another example is the "Tower of Babble" collage was influenced by the well-known Brueghel painting of the Tower of Babel.
My basing the collage on this rendition of the fabled structure was integral to the concept of bringing the ancient up to date and made complete by my inserting cell phones in all the windows and archways. The "built in" message is that our addiction to mobile technology, of which we are so proud, will be the undoing of our ability to communicate. Just as the Babylonians were proud of their advanced technology, their success in baking bricks allowed them to think they could build a tower high enough to reach the heavens, but it led to the destruction of their society.
Additionally, I make collages that illustrate a significant passage of a Torah Portion for bar and bat mitzvah that can be made into the invitation to the simcha.