I am a Diaspora Jew. I have always aimed to achieve a meaningful balance between my secular life and my religion. Being Jewish has always mattered to me, for it gave me a sense of belonging and purpose. The weekly attendance at my local synagogue through prayer, festivals, and customs helped me to identify with Judaism.
Surrounded by a backdrop of architectural splendor, the male-dominated services created a spiritual euphoria of drama with movement, color, and light.
The Glory of Brighton - Middle Street. Oil on Canvas. 758 mm x 611 mm. 1995 Beverley Jane Stewart © All rights reserved.
Through exploring the theme of public and private space within Judaism, the synagogue, and the secular surroundings - I evolved and developed into a visual writer, illustrating the story of Jewish social history.
The Wedding Scene - Bevis Marks, London. Oil on Canvas. 760 mm x 606 mm. 1994 Beverley Jane Stewart © All rights reserved.
It shows how Jews have kept their identity whilst contributing to the secular world, supporting financial markets, trades, politics, and arts. I became aware of the political pressures and the relationship Jews had with the indigenous community, their acceptance, or rejection.
The Wedding Scene - Bevis Marks, London.(Detail) Beverley Jane Stewart © All rights reserved.
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Issue #50 August 2020