Baruch Nachshon

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Baruch Nachshon
Baruch Nachshon
1939, Haifa, Israel
Kiryat Arba, Hebron, Israel
Symbolic Surrealistic Visionary Judaica artist
Distinguished Artist Award, Bar Ilan University, 1989
A visionary spiritual Judaica artist who is part of Chabad Judaism.

Baruch Nachshon is a surrealist visionary Judaica artist who lives and works in Kiryat Arba, adjacent to the ancient city of Hebron.


[edit] Background

Baruch Nachshon was born in the religiously mixed northern coastal city of Haifa in 1939. As a young child he wasn’t interested in his regular school studies, but fortunately had a teacher who recognized his talent and encouraged him to draw and paint. At the age of 11 Nachshon was introduced to Shlomo Nerani, the only student of Cezanne, who took him under his wing, and he became Nerani’s apprentice-student.

When Nachshon went into the army he served as a shepherd based on Kibbutz Lavi. This enabled him to connect with nature and to develop his spiritual understanding of the world. After his military service Nachshon continued his studies at a Chabad Yeshiva in Lod, where he developed a life-long attachment to the Lubavitch movement.

[edit] Relgious-Spiritual Development

Aside from studying Chabad Chassidic teachings, Baruch Nachshon also studied the work of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, and the writings of the Zohar of Rebbe Shimon Bar Yochai. In 1965 he was in the United States and had a three hour private audience with the late Lubuvitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson. Rabbi Schneerson offered Nachshon a two year scholarship to study art in a kosher way, and gave Baruch a blessing for success.

[edit] Hebron

Upon returning to Israel Baruch taught in an elementary school until 1967. After the Six Day War, Nachshon decided to move with his wife and family to the city of Hebron, in the West Bank, previously held by Jordan. There he opened an art gallery very close to the Tomb of the Patriarchs, (the Machpelah Cave), where Abraham and Sarah, of the Bible, are buried. Nachshon, who speaks Arabic, was able to make good relationships with his Arab neighbors, and he is still well known in the area, even though he now lives in the nearby Jewish town of Kiryat Arba.

[edit] Style

Baruch Nachshon is an auto-didactic visionary painter who considers that his art is a conduit from above. Nachshon’s paintings are very symbolic and mystical often concentrating on pictures of the world after the Redemption and the coming of the Messiah.

Other paintings, more surrealistic and lyrical realism in style, focus on the surrounding Hebron landscape, especially on the Tomb of the Patriarchs. Baruch Nachshon’s style has been compared to that of Chagall, but his main inspiration apart from the landscape and nature is from the Psalms of David and the prayers and melodies of the Jewish year, especially those of the Sabbath. Due to his respect and devotion to the Lubavitch Rebbe, many of his paintings include images and portraits of the late sage. Nachshon works in both oils and acrylic, often producing a panoramic style of picture in a narrow landscape format similar to a small flattened religious scroll.

[edit] Exhibitions

Baruch Nachshon’s first exhibition in the United States was in 1980 with the encouragement of Rabbi Schneerson. He has since exhibited his work in U.S., Canada, Brazil and Argentina, Australia, England and Hong Kong. Nachshon’s paintings, including serigraphs and greetings cards, are available online and from his gallery.

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