Rimon, an initiative of the Minneapolis Jewish Federation, promotes and enhances Jewish identity through arts and culture, supports arts and artists who broadly explore Jewish themes, and assists the greater Jewish community in developing a collaborative involvement with the arts.
Between the pandemic, the political uprisings, and the general state of uncertainty that has defined 2020, many businesses and organizations were forced to rethink every aspect of their operation. But according to David Jordan Harris, executive director of Rimon: The Minnesota Jewish Arts Council, 2020 didn’t sidetrack Rimon—it focused the organization.
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In 1999 Rimon published a hard-copy 91-page Minnesota Jewish Arts Directory. It featured profiles of hundreds of Minnesota-based Jewish artists and proved to be a game-changer in how the community understood the depth and talent of the regional Jewish arts scene.
The present moment requires a different tool – a free, online, searchable, interactive database that is easily updated but also maintained for a high standard of consistency and excellence. Thanks to a seed grant from the Minneapolis Jewish Federation and a full-time summer intern from the University of Chicago, Rimon has begun putting this dream into place – just in time for our 25th anniversary year.
If you’re a Minnesota Jewish artist in any artistic discipline, expect to hear from the Rimon office in 2020. If you believe that you or someone you know are not in Rimon’s contact list (you don’t receive e-mails from Rimon), let us know who you are at email@example.com
Artists are essential workers in Minnesota Jewish culture. A comprehensive artist directory will raise the profile of our remarkable community of writers, playwrights, choreographers, composers, actors, musicians, dancers, filmmakers, architects, visual artists, photographers, and other arts workers.
Rimon continues to innovate in teen arts education through its Young Artist Mentorships, funded by Kris and John MacDonald. Student writers Noa Gross and Shira Hanovich and photographers Eliah Fink and Haya Fine are sharpening their skills and expanding their horizons with local arts professionals, writer Alison Morse and photographer Debra Fisher Goldstein.
Fisher Goldstein observes, “What I find tremendously gratifying is the cross-pollination between us – three people of differing ages, experience, and interests, seeding each other with creative ideas and possibilities.” Morse agrees, “In our work and meetings, we question the world and our place in it with empathy and candor. Together, we are artists and teachers.”
Always eager to explore new ideas, Rimon has added a new program – a visual arts public mentorship. It’s designed for anyone – beginner or experienced artist – who has started (or would like to start) a project and is looking for critical feedback on their creative practice.
The four participants (visual artists Kyna Levi, Madalina Kelner, Phil Raskin, and Suzanne Fenton) work in many disciplines – from ceramics and photography to painting and multimedia art-making. Their mentor, Avigail Manneberg, is helping the participants identify the essence of their work and strengthen their project’s impact.
Mannenberg comments, “We explore different perspectives and artistic practices. Themes of identity, community, connection, and how to create an impact with our artistic work – we explore it all in our meetings.”
Check out the online informal dialogue of what these remarkable artists are exploring in their final (virtual) event on September 13.
From the Minne-apple to the Big Apple!
Our Local Chapter of HaZamir’s Gala Fundraiser is Sunday, February 23, 2020 | 5-7 pm. Hosted at Beth El Synagogue, 5225 Barry Street West, St. Louis Park, MN 55305.
Enjoy a concert featuring The Minneapolis/St. Paul Chapter of HaZamir: The International Jewish Teen Choir, under the direction of Cantor Audrey Abrams; as well as New York street food and Raffles.
Adults: $20 in advance | $25 at the door
Tickets can be purchased through HaZamir singers or
*Proceeds will help subsidize the singers on their March trip to Lincoln Center in
New York City and start a local HaZamir endowment to support this group for
years to come.
Keren Or (Ray of Light) announces its 16th annual creative arts contest for Jewish youth. Minnesota Jewish students in grades 7-12 are invited to submit original poetry, creative prose, and photographs. The deadline for submissions is Friday, February 14, 2020, 5 p.m. All submissions must be submitted using the online forms provided at www.kerenorcontest.org.
Prizes in each category are awarded to two separate groups: students in grades 7-9 and grades 10-12. The prizes are $100 for first place, $50 for second and third places, and $36 for Honorable Mention.
Winning entries will be published at the Keren Or website and in a special supplement to The American Jewish World. They will also be included in an exhibit of Keren Or’s winning submissions at the Sabes JCC in spring of 2020. An awards ceremony honoring all the participants will take place on Sunday, May 17, 3 p.m., at the Sabes JCC (4330 South Cedar Lake Road, Minneapolis).
Keren Or was founded in 2004 by Jerry and Eileen Siegel (z’’l) to honor the memory of their daughter, Karen Siegel-Jacobs. Siegel-Jacobs grew up in Minneapolis and attended the Minneapolis Talmud Torah. She was an active member of Adath Jeshurun Congregation and USY and as a teenager wrote poems and short stories.
Keren Or is managed by Rimon: The Minnesota Jewish Arts Council (an initiative of the Minneapolis Jewish Federation) and is funded by the Karen Siegel-Jacobs Fund at the Adath Jeshurun Foundation.
For additional information and contest rules, visit www.kerenorcontest.org or call 952-381-3449.
Creativity is thriving at Sholom. Rimon was delighted to bring writing instruction for the fourth year to the Sholom campuses. The Knollwood Writers’ circle and residents at St. Paul’s Bentson Family Assisted Living Residence picked up their pens and tapped on their keyboards with flair and heart.
Under the tutelage of accomplished teachers Alison Morse and Judy Brier, the groups explored the pleasures of memoir writing, learning new writing techniques, and honing their craft along the way. As always, friendships were deepened and new friends were made as the writers listened to each other’s stories. Many thanks to the Oren and Sharron Steinfeldt Foundation for its generous support.
Rimon’s commitment to teen arts education grows deeper each year. Following a successful launch in 2018 of the Young Artist Mentorship program, Rimon doubled the number of students selected to participate in the summer of 2019.
Visual artists Jonah Schmieg and Isa Kaner-Roth, photographers Dvorah Leah Kvasnik and Ruby Stillman, and writers Max Walker and Nora Cornell worked one-on-one between June and September with local artist-educators Avigail Manneberg, Linda Brooks, and Alison Morse.
Avigail Manneberg, a graduate of Israel’s Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, is an accomplished artist and teacher whose own work includes painting, drawing, video, sound, and fabric. Linda Brooks has exhibited her photographs internationally and taught at St. Paul Academy and Summit School for 27 years. Alison Morse’s award-winning fiction, poetry, and narrative non-fiction have appeared in numerous national literary journals, magazines, and anthologies.
An informal dialogue and exhibit of the students’ work took place on September 22 (2 pm) at the Sabes JCC. Many thanks to Kris and John MacDonald who have funded this exciting program from its inception.
Rimon has been named one of North America’s top 50 innovative nonprofit Jewish organizations in the eleventh annual Slingshot Guide. For FIVE consecutive years Rimon has been recognized by Slingshot and the only Minnesota nonprofit to receive the honor in 2016. Selected from among hundreds of finalists reviewed by 93 professionals with expertise in grant-making and Jewish communal life, the Guide called Rimon, “a model of how to bring both Jewish artists and their art into… the center of Jewish community life through high-impact collaborations, education, arts advocacy, and creative alliances that build community in lasting ways.” Organizations selected in this year’s Guide were evaluated on their innovative approach, the impact they have in their work, the leadership they have in their sector, and their effectiveness at achieving results.
Rimon recently partnered with teens from Yachad MN to produce unique work inspired by stories, music and discussion with Vietnamese musician and artist, Hoang thi Kim Chi, and instructor, David Feinberg.