Installation at Temple Anshe Hesed- Erie PA
Ark Wall Design Concept for Anshe Hesed
“Ufros Aleinu Sukkat Shlomecha”
Spread Over Us Your Shelter of Peace
On my first visit, the wonderful committee members, Lisa, Ina, Jackie and Bobbi gave me a guided tour of the original Anshe Hesed building and then brought me to this new building with the excitement, love and joy of a mother introducing me to a new baby. I could sense the extraordinary care everyone had put into this project.
The inspiration for the design came to me on my ride home after my first visit. When I first entered the sanctuary, I remembered the overwhelming feeling of being sheltered beneath a tent. That feeling made me think of the words of the Hashkivenu “Spread over us the shelter of your peace.” That prayer reminds us that we are surrounded by miracles and blessings in our lives and I knew those words would add a spiritual dimension to the striking architecture of the room. I incorporated colored shards of the vintage stained-glass into the mosaic art to honor the rich history of the congregation.
My design is a stylized, sculptural Hebrew letter shin – the first letter of God’s name (Shaddai). The shin also begins the word for Peace (Shalom). The curved strokes of the Hebrew letter evoke the feeling of the comforting embrace of the Anshe Hesed community. The ark door slides beneath the mosaic art, becoming a metaphor for God’s sheltering wings. The glass mosaic was created from thousands of pieces of hand-cut, luminous, transparent and 100%recycled white glass.
I wanted the mosaic art to be a contemplative and sacred focal point for all those who gather to pray in this place. I hope the calming palette and the ever-changing effect of light on the luminous glass will make prayer, study and song an inspirational experience.
The heart and soul of the Anshe Hesed community is its members. This beautiful new structure shelters, nourishes, protects and enhances this community. When God commanded Moses to build the mishkan, the portable ark, the Torah says that everyone whose heart lifted him up came and made an offering. This building is the result of all your dedicated hearts who have lifted you all to this moment. I thank you all for the honor of allowing me to create this artwork for your Anshe Hesed community
BONNIE COHEN’S ART SELECTED FOR PRESTIGIOUS INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION OF CONTEMPORARY MOSAIC ART
The Society of American Mosaic Art (SAMA) has selected the work of artist Bonnie Cohen to be included in the 2019 Mosaic Arts International Exhibition. This competitive annual exhibition features innovative design and masterful technique as explored by some of the best international artists working in the medium.
The Architectural & Site-Specific segment will feature artwork of 19 artists from the United States, Canada, Australia, and Brazil representing the best in contemporary architectural mosaics. The 22 ft x 8 ft mosaic installation is located at Bowling Green University College of Health and Human Services.
The predominately white palette of handmade tiles and luminous recycled glass create a calming environment changing with the natural light throughout the day. The artwork includes intricate details, textures, and inspiring quotations imbedded in the handmade tiles to reinforce the seven dimensions of wellness-the focus of the College of Health and Human Service’s curriculum.
Juror, Kim Emerson (Founder of the San Diego Mosaic School) selected the finalists who’s work will be represented at the Nashville Public Library Art Gallery through print, video and digital images. Materials on display will including drawings, sketchbooks and material samples that will provide visitors a unique perspective into the process of creating a large-scale mosaic work.
Bowling Green State University College of Health and Human Services
Percent for Arts Proposal presented by Bonnie Cohen
“See the Difference, Be the Difference”
From the blackest edges of outer space, to our own personal space, circles symbolize our universe, our communities, our friendships and our families. Circles evoke the vibration of sound waves, concentric rings of rippling water, and embracing arms. Circles record precise scientific data magnified through the circular lens of a microscope.
Circles create a strong graphic image from afar, allowing the flow of the tesserae to draw the viewer close — to touch, feel, and discover intricate details. The circles intersect, overlap and converge, accentuating the luminous recycled glass and handmade tiles.
A bold and bright glass line traverses the entire wall and wraps around each corner, anchoring the artwork and drawing the eye into the central circles. The gray outer circles become lighter towards the center, where sparks of colored shards converge into intricately detailed circles suggesting both our commonality and our diversity.
The timeless medium of mosaic art is a metaphor for our communities. Every single piece is enhanced by its relationship to the pieces around it. And each individual piece is an integral part of the big picture.
The predominately white palette is enhanced by surrounding colors and light to instill a calming environment that changes with every hour of the day. By touching the tiles and discovering the intricate details, the viewer can experience the art up close and even see his or her reflection in the pieces of mirror scattered throughout the mosaic.
Inspiring quotations embedded in the handmade tiles reflect the seven dimensions of wellness, the focus of the College of Health and Human Service’s curriculum. The artwork brings light, color, joy and healing into the lives of students, faculty, patients and visitors and inspires them to make a difference and be the difference.