Temple Beth Sholom will host artist Siona Benjamin on Thursday, November 7, at 6:30 PM in an evening event that will appeal to many senses.
First, there’ll be a supper featuring Indian cuisine in honor of the transcultural artist’s Indian roots; then there’ll be a documentary film, “Blue Like Me: The Art of Siona Benjamin,” and finally, there’ll be an art workshop entitled, “Identity – What Color Are You?”
The event will commemorate the synagogue’s Rabbi Ario S. & Tess Hymans Judaica Museum’s 50th anniversary, says Bat-Sheva Slavin, museum director. The artist’s work is the museum’s current exhibit.
Benjamin, a Bene Israel Jew from India now living in the U.S., describes her artistic perspective as one that “bridges the traditional and the modern, and sparks discourse across cultures.”
She explains that although her family gradually dispersed, mostly to Israel and America, her parents remained in India. “I can still recall the ornate synagogues of my Bombay childhood,” she says, adding that her paintings combine the imagery of the past with her role in America today. “Many blue-skinned characters populate my paintings…becoming symbols of a timeless global identity free of prejudices and boundaries.”
The artist has an MFA in painting as well as an MFA in theater set- design, and has exhibited in the U.S., Europe, and Asia. She was the recipient of two Fullbright Fellowships: to India in 2011 and to Israel in 2016. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Art in America, The Times of India, The Jerusalem Post, and other publications.
The fee for the evening is $36 per person. The community is invited. Please RSVP by emailing [email protected] and mail your check payable to Temple Beth Sholom, 401 Roslyn Road., Roslyn Heights, NY 11577. Please earmark it for the 11/7 dinner event. For more information, please contact the temple at 516-621-2288.