Haaretz Story on Amichai Windows

 Haaretz newspaper article on Amichai Windows עמיחי בחלוןA full-page feature story ran on June 21, 2018 in the Gallery section of Haaretz, a Hebrew-language newspaper in Israel.

It focuses mostly on the reasons for book artist Rick Black to have commenced this 10-year-project as well as Hana Amichai’s granting permission to use the poems.

The online version includes a few links to some wonderful video clips with Amichai in Hebrew. We do not yet have a translation of the article into English, but the headline reads, “Suddenly, Amichai is Peeking Out of the Window.”

The photo of one of the spreads is the first one of the artist book, “Eternal Window.”

Click here to see the piece online.

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Israel Radio Interviews Rick Black

On a visit to Israel in May for a book launch of The Amichai Windows at Tmol Shilshom cafe in Jerusalem, Rick Black had a chance to talk with Ron Nesiel, host of the show, “The Weekly Journal” on Kan-Reshet Bet.

As part of the 20-minute segment, Nesiel also spoke with Hebrew literature Prof. Avner Holtzman of Tel Aviv University about Amichai’s work and played a Yossi Banai song of an Amichai poem, I Told You That it Would be so and You Didn’t Believe.

A link to the Hebrew radio show is here; broadcast on Saturday, May 26, 2018, the segment begins at 42:30 of the hour-long program. For those who would prefer the English, a translation is below . . .

Ron Nesiel: We’ll stay with literature but go from prose to poetry.  In any case, we’re marking 60 years since the publication of Yehuda Amichai’s book, Two Hopes Away, which was published 60 years ago by HaKibbutz HaMeuhad in 1958.

Together with his first published book, these two volumes launched a revolution in Hebrew literature in the 1950s. A major motif of both volumes, but in particular of Two Hopes Away, is the window . . . and the motif of looking out and looking in a window is what inspired the creation of a new, extraordinary volume, The Amichai Windows. The creator is Rick Black, a former reporter for The New York Times in Israel. He was here this month and presented his new book at Tmol Shilshom café in Jerusalem, the same café that Yehuda Amichai used to visit. It took Black ten years to complete this project.

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Jerusalem Book Launch

The book launch of The Amichai Windows at Tmol Shilshom cafe in Jerusalem attracted a standing room only crowd.

Most of the evening was in Hebrew but I gave a slide show in English. The program also featured Hebrew Literature Professor Ariel Hirschfeld of Hebrew University and Hana Amichai.

My thanks go out to so many people who made the evening possible including but not only Hana Amichai, David Ehrlich, Ariel Hirschfeld and Naama Shahar. And, of course, to Arieh Rudnick who took all of the photos and granted permission to share them.

Hope you’ll enjoy the photo show . . . !

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Library of Congress

I am proud to announce that the Rare Books and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress has purchased one of the 18 copies of The Amichai Windows. It still needs to be catalogued but will be available to the public soon.

Pictured here is Mark Dimunation, the chief of the collection, with an open enclosure of our artist book in front of him. He’s holding up a copy of The Magic of Bookmaking, a book that my brother Bruce Black made for me.

The book documents a day in photos of my printing in the letterpress shop at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Maryland. You can take a look at a video of it here.

Mark Dimunation, chief of the Rare Book and Special Collections Division

Mark Dimunation, chief of the Rare Book and Special Collections Division

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American Jewish Libraries Review

American Jewish Libraries

Rick Black at the opening of his exhibition, “A Light By The Window”

The first review of The Amichai Windows, written by Yermiyahu Ahron Taub, ran in the February/March newsletter of the American Jewish Libraries.

“Accompanied by an introduction by Robert Alter and an in-depth guide by Rick Black, The Amichai Windows is a towering achievement in American arts and letters. . . it is the culmination of a decade of reflection, research, translation, and artistic imagining and a breathtaking exploration of literary and visual poetics.”—from the AJL Newsletter

Taub, who first saw our artist book at the celebratory book launch at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, MD, was subsequently inspired to pen a review for the newsletter.

You can read the entire American Jewish Libraries review, which starts on page two, here.

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“A Light By The Window” Photos

Here are some photos from the exhibition “A Light By The Windows,” in which all 18 spreads of our artist book, The Amichai Windows, were on display at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, MD.

After Rick Black’s artist talk, we had a wonderful panel discussion with Helen Frederick  and Judith K. Brodsky — and lots of questions from the audience. Continue reading

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Amichai Windows Book Launch

“A poem is like a lullaby that you sing in order to calm yourself.”
Yehuda Amichai–

Flyer for exhibition of "The Amichai Windows" at Pyramid Atlantic Art CenterA Light By The Window, an exhibition and book launch of The Amichai Windows by artist Rick Black, will be held from 1 – 4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 18th, at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, MD.

A bilingual Hebrew/English artist book that was 10 years in the making, The Amichai Windows features 18 poems by renown Israeli poet Yehuda Amichai. The exhibition will display letterpressed spreads and prints from the book, including multi-layered collages of more than 100 images from archives around the world, replicas of Amichai’s original poems and much more.

Helen Frederick and Judith K. Brodsky, each a leading artist, printmaker and arts advocate, will be on hand to discuss Black’s book, the connection between art and poetry, and the place of limited editions today.

The exhibition will be up from February 15th to February 21st. For more information, please see www.pyramidatlanticartcenter.org

Free admission with light refreshments.

 

 

 

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Amichai Windows – Final Touches

Over the past couple of months, I have been busy finishing up and putting the final touches on The Amichai Windows. Here is a medley of pictures to give you a sense of how my artist book is coming together. . . !

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Yehuda Amichai and God

Original copy of Amichai's poem, "Yom Kippur." Reproduced courtesy of Hana Amichai from the archives of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.

Original copy of Amichai’s poem, “Yom Kippur.” Reproduced courtesy of Hana Amichai from the archives of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.

Yehuda Amichai frequently argues with God in his poems.

Raised in an Orthodox household, Amichai stopped practicing when he became a teenager — much to the dismay of his father. They argued about God and Jewish ritual practice for years. In fact, Amichai continued to argue with him long after his father died.

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Amichai Windows Papercuts

When I had the idea of working with a papercut artist on The Amichai Windows, I never thought that I would end up working with the papercut artist who did the ketubah (Jewish marriage contract) when my wife and I got married years earlier. Continue reading

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