Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Silk screen on porcelain Pictures in Stone

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Would you believe? This little (now white) house is where former President of Israel Yitzhak Navon grew up.

The plaque on his house in the old Jerusalem neighborhood of Nachlaot says so.

Here, you can enlarge it and see him, the smallest boy in the 1925 photo.
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Talk about roots!
Former President Navon is descended from Spanish Jews who settled in eastern Europe after the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492 and later moved to Jerusalem in 1670!
His mother's side, the Ben-Atar family, came from Spain to Portugal to Morocco; and finally to Jerusalem in 1884.
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Gilboa street (with the Navon house showing on the left) shows the tell-tale convex paving, meaning a cistern is below.
The little square at the end has the opening to the cistern, now sealed off.
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Navon loved his neighborhood so much that he wrote a play about growing up there.
Bustan Sfaradi (Sephardi Orchard) became a famous musical.
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Sir Moses (Moshe) Montefiore gave money to build the Ohel Moshe section of the Nachlaot quarter, and it is named after him.
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And guess where Montefiore was born!
In Italy, in Livorno!
This I learned from Italian blogger VP. You will enjoy his post http://livornodailyphoto.blogspot.com/2010/05/moses-montefiore.html
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As photo-bloggers, you will be pleased to know that dozens of such signs now adorn the neighborhood.
"Picture in Stone" is a project of Lev Ha-ir Community Center, which gathered family photos and historical testimony from those who lived or live there.
Photos of the original settlers, who left the security of the Old City in the late 19th century for the insecurity of New Jerusalem, are attached to the walls of homes, at the entrances to courtyards, and near the historical locations of schools, hospitals, orphanages, caf├ęs, and more.
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By the 1970s the houses and the society were disintegrating. Lev Ha-ir began a process of restoration and gentrification.
And I believe the Picture in Stone contributed much to the pride of the place.
Nachlaot is now a charming and sought-after place to live, especially for artists, musicians, and--as one funny article claims--especially for "God 'n granola-inspired young American Jews, who lend parts of the neighborhood a feel of a Torah-inflected commune."
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The special technique of silk screen on porcelain is durable but expensive.
I heard from a tour guide who was showing her family's Picture in Stone that the families paid for them.
Even better! Good for them! Thank you!
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7 comments:

Kay said...

That is definitely a pretty street. I'm just amazed at the myriad places you're able to find of wonderful interest to all of us.

Virginia said...

A lovely way to remember those that have gone before. I love his little white house with the blue trim.

VP said...

This is the right kind of pride that sometimes a whole neighborhood needs.
These plaque are really beautiful and well made well beyond their historical meaning. A simple idea with great results.

Francisca said...

What a fascinating post, Dina. A lovely way to keep the history alive. And to think of all that globetrotting at a time when it meant a lot more than a few hours on a plane.

JM said...

The top shot is so pretty! If I didn't know where this photo was taken I would say this was Tunisia. Great post, Dina!

B SQUARED said...

I find this, and all you commentaries, a joy to read.

Eki said...

Many great leaders often come from a humble begining. They learn from their hardship and know better how it feels to struggle up the ladders. I like the neighborhood in these pictures. Somewhat it has the atmosphere of close-knit-ness where kin support is always available.