Category Archives: Art

Friday Photos — Scattered Edition

Tweet Usually, we publish photos organized around a central theme. Not today. We’re feeling a bit scattered. We’re spooked by the Emperor Obama, by what’s happening to this country. And of course by the Arab Muslim war against the Jews. The Iranians are edging closer to becoming a nuclear power. We are watching various national […]

Also posted in Anna May Wong, Brigitte Bardot, Hollywood in Stitches, Marilyn Monroe, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Responses

Scenes From Movies I’d Like To Write

Tweet When our children were little, one of our favorite Shabbat activities was leafing through art books. I’d sink into a comfortable chair. One of the children would plop into my lap. We’d look at reproductions of art, and make up stories about various paintings. The best paintings are like scenes from movies never produced. […]

Posted in Art | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Responses

Friday Photos: Totally Random

Tweet Usually, we publish photos that have a central theme. Not today. We’re feeling a bit scattered. Perhaps we’re spooked by ObamaCare, by what’s happening to this country. We are watching a national calamity unfold in slow motion, and we are helpless to stop it. In any case, here are a few photos, most taken […]

Also posted in Alfred Hitchcock, Friday Fotos, Photography, Los Angeles, Pico-Robertson, Photography, Signs, Vertigo | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 9 Responses

Hollywood Hair: Leda Styled By Leonardo da Vinci

Tweet Years ago, on Shabbos evenings, when our children were little, I would frequently grab an art book, sit in my chair, and one of the kids would climb into my lap. We’d turn the pages, look at the pictures, and make up stories about the figures in the paintings. Ariel, Z’TL, was intrigued by […]

Also posted in Ava Gardner, Hollywood, Jean Harlow, Leonardo da Vinci | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Responses

The Art of High Heels

Tweet Freud famously asked: “What do women want?” Poor Sigmund, obsessively seeking an answer in the murky depths of the subconscious. Really, all he had to do was look around, and down, to realize that women want… shoes. Designer Boyarde Messenger’s hand painted collection of Charlotte Olympia pumps for Neiman Marcus is for women who […]

Also posted in Friday Fashion, Friday Footwear | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 17 Responses

Friday Photos: Seraphic Secret in Israel

Tweet Karen and I attended our niece Ariella’s wedding in Israel two weeks ago. It was a quick trip, just four days, but it was still enough to create a lifetime’s worth of memories.

Also posted in Friday Fotos, Israel | Tagged , , , , | 19 Responses

The Terror of Art

Tweet In 1917, Marcel Duchamp signed R. Mutt to a porcelain urinal, titled it “Fountain,” and declared it a work of art. The art world was immediately plunged into a new era where talent, draftsmanship, and beauty were suddenly declared irrelevant, and unnecessary. In fact, the very notion of talent was deemed unnecessary to the […]

Also posted in Hamas, Islamic Terror | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Responses

Friday Fotos: Vacation

Tweet The theme for our brief summer vacation was “Hooray for Capitalists.” William Randolph Hearst and John Paul Getty were titans of  business who built empires, gathered stupifying art collections and then built suitable structures in which to display their treasures. Hearst built the world’s first newspaper media empire. San Simeon, designed by the great […]

Also posted in Family | Tagged , , , , , , | 8 Responses

Breaking Scandal: National Endowment for the Arts in Service to Obama

Tweet Soviet Realism celebrated the cult of mass murderer Joseph Stalin Art in service to the state is not art but propaganda. The role of art is to steep the viewer in a transcendent space. Propaganda aims at buttressing a narrow political and social agenda. Totalitarian regimes always follow a strategy of using art to […]

Posted in Art | 11 Responses

Memories of a Jewish Childhood in Poland Before the Holocaust

Tweet The Black Wedding The memorial book for Apt recounts how a holy rabbi helped the town during a cholera epidemic in 1892. Every few days someone died. In a community of about six thousand, that was a calamity. Prominent citizens went to the holy rabbi, imploring him to say a few prayers to the […]

Posted in Art | 7 Responses

Art as Prayer, Prayer as Art

Tweet Moshe Hammer, Z’L. True genius is a rare commodity. Five years ago, 26-year-old Moshe Hammer, z”l, a Lubavitch artist who frequently worked through the night, stepped outside for a walk in Los Angeles, to clear his head and recharge his creative batteries. As was his custom, Moshe rambled miles from his apartment in the […]

Posted in Art | 6 Responses

Moshe Hammer: A Life Interrupted

Tweet It’s not often you come across genius. Four years ago, 26 year-old Moshe Hammer, Z’L a Lubavitch Chasid and an intensely private artist, took a break from work on his drawings, and stepped outside for a long walk in Los Angeles—to clear his head. Moshe rambled miles from his apartment in the Fairfax district […]

Posted in Art | 30 Responses

Jihad in the Art World

Tweet Ah, the art world, where it’s okay, even fashionable to mock Christianity, and where attacks on Conservatives and the current administration are celebrtaed as brave and passionate defenses of free speech. Yeah, about as brave as wearing the latest Dolce & Gabbana threads. But G-d forbid you should even mention a particular word. One […]

Posted in Art | 11 Responses

Being Vermeer

Tweet When Seraphic Secret is not re-reading Jane Austen, we are leafing through reproductions of paintings by Johannes Vermeer and wondering just how much of our Apple stock we would have to sell to purchase one of the Dutch master’s luminous paintings. More than we own. More than Steve Jobs controls. I think it’s a […]

Posted in Art | 10 Responses

National Jewish Memoir Writing Project

Tweet A Memoir-Writing Workshop led by by Ruchama King Feuerman, MFA, novelist, essayist, winner of 2007 Christopher Isherwood Prize. Please submit a manuscript — up to 5 pages — to be considered eligible for a special memoir writing class via tele-conference. About the workshop: Certain people live with a constant awareness of the passing seasons, […]

Posted in Art | 2 Responses

Photographs From Poland’s Lost Jews

Tweet They are exquisitely ordinary family snapshots: six young men and women on the beach, playfully arranged in a pyramid; a bourgeois family flaunting its Sabbath best of fur-lined topcoats and rakishly angled hats; a dark-haired Orthodox mother with an infant cradled in her arms and her five children, three barefoot, lined up stiffly in […]

Posted in Art | 4 Responses


Tweet Stephen Z. Friedman, Seraphic Secret’s New York correspondent, attended a performance of Dai and filed this review. ******* Coming directly from the airport, after you’ve just dropped just off your 14-year-old daughter for her flight to Tel Aviv, is probably not the best time to see Iris Bahr’s one-woman show, DAI (Hebrew: Enough). Any […]

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In Search of Lost Time

Tweet On January 1, 1909 Marcel Proust dipped his madeleine into a cup of tea and thus began his seven volume novel In Search of Lost Time, or as some call it, Remembrance of Things Past. It took Proust fourteen years to write this novel of three thousand pages. I have read the book, and […]

Posted in Art | 19 Responses

2006 Favorites

Tweet Here’s a brief list of some of my favorite, um, stuff, from the year 2006. I know that critics like to make Ten Best lists, especially of movies. But I’m not sure there were ten really good movies this year, In any case, my favorite movies were not made as movies, and some were […]

Posted in Art | 22 Responses

Bound for Glory

Tweet Wonderful color photos of depression period America, 1939-1943

Posted in Art | 3 Responses
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  • Annual Ariel Avrech
    Memorial Lectures

    Young Israel of Century City
    Eleventh: June 8, 2014
    Michael Medved: "Shifting Alliances: Why Liberals No Longer Reliably Support Israel — And Conservatives Do." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 97MB)
    Tenth: June 9, 2013
    David Horowitz: "The War Against Judaism on the University Campus." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 16MB)
    Ninth: June 3, 2012
    Joel B. Pollak: "The Mainstream Media's Betrayal of Israel." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 15MB)
    Eighth: June 5, 2011
    Yossi Klein Halevi: "What is Expected of a Survivor People: Lessons My Father Taught Me." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 18MB)
    Seventh: June 13, 2010
    Dennis Prager: "Happiness is a Mitzvah, Not an Emotion." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 80MB)
    Sixth: June 21, 2009
    Rabbi Steven Pruzansky: "Conformity in Jewish Life: Vice, Virtue or Affectation?" Blog Post | Audio (mp3 64MB)
    Fifth: June 15, 2008
    Rabbi Dr. Gil S. Perl: "What Was the Rosh Yeshiva Reading: Intellectual Openness in 19th Century Lithuania." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 70MB)
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