Artists’ and Artisans’ Show Lures Her to a Synagogue – San Diego Jewish World

Posted By on April 11, 2024

Story and Photos by Mimi Pollack and Fred Kropveld

SAN DIEGO As someone who is not comfortable with organized religion, I rarely go to a temple or synagogue. However, I am all in when a house of worship opens its doors to artists, so they can display their work.

This past Sunday, Tifereth Israel Synagogue hosted its First Annual Artists Showcase. Many talented artists came out to proudly display their creations which ranged from art, books, music, photography, woodworking, other crafts and Israeli stamp collecting. The event was jointly sponsored by the Tifereth Israel Synagogue Mens Club and Sisterhood.

Inside the synagogues social hall, rows of tables were set up with the artists showing and explaining their work. It was a lovely spring day, and I was happy to see so many people participating. It was artist Roni Breites first exhibit and she set up a beautiful display table and wall behind her. By the end of the afternoon, she had sold eight pieces, and was thrilled. More on this artist in an upcoming article.

Here are some photos that Fred Kropveld and I took at the event and the people we spoke to.

Bill Goldschneider proudly showed his large body of Judaica work which was for display only. His woodworking and paper folding art won Best of Show awards last summer at the San Diego County Fair at Del Mar.

Being able to display Goldschneiders work to fellow congregants at Tifereth Israel and the chance to exhibit the photographs of Leah Horstman, who also took Best of Show awards at the county fair was the impetus for creating the synagogues first annual art show.

Ken Reifman displayed daughter Leah Horstmans award-winning nature photographs, two of which are pictured below him. Horstmans work has been published by National Geographic.

While the majority of the exhibitors were members of Tifereth Israel Synagogue, a Conservative congregation, members of other congregations also participated. For example, Ben Schindler, who is a member of Temple Emanu-El, was there with M. Lee Connolly, author of Two Who Survived, a told to book about Bens late parents, Holocaust survivors Max and Rose Schindler. Max and Rose were beloved members of Tifereth Israel.

Ben Schindlers sister, Roxanne Schindler Katz, a Tifereth Israel congregant, works with her brother to keep the memory of their mother alive. I (Mimi) had the privilege of meeting Rose before she passed, and she was a very dear woman. In this photo. Roxanne at right is with Carleigh Gold, whose resin art frequently incorporates stones.

Musician, author, and film maker, the multi-talented Yale Strom, sold his CD, The Wolf and the Lamb, as well as a book by his wife, Elizabeth Schwartz, The Sweet Fragrance of Life. Strom, an ethnomusicologist, klezmer musician, and artist-in-residence at San Diego State University, had been a speaker for Tifereth Israels Mens Club.

Mens Club President Ben Dishman and his wife, Robin Dishman, were both exhibitors. Robin displayed her intricate Judaica paper cuts.

Ben showed his paintings and photographs and sold copies of his book, I Can Fix That Well Maybe. The book is about his experiences as a psychiatric pharmacist at the Veterans Administration, and what drugs are appropriately prescribed for various mental illnesses.

I (Mimi) am an American citizen by birth who was raised in Mexico City. I was delighted to be able to speak in Spanish with such Latin American-born exhibitors as fine artist Amparo Goldman, a Colombian, who calls her large, colorful, eye-catching, Judaic-themed paintings her spiritual expression.

I also was delighted to speak with Argentine Judy Shear, whose architect husband Hillel Shear, paints bright, shining, portraits of animals.

Oscar Worm, known to many as the now retired co-proprietor with his wife Olga of Bekkers Catering, also is a master woodworker with pots and bowls being among his favorite objects to fashion.

Podiatrist Jeff Korn is an amateur photographer who for the first time sold his photos of animals at the show. He was so happy about that feat.

Lizeth Hernandez exhibited nude silhouette photography as well as her paintings.

Steve Speiser exhibited a range of desk and kitchen objects of his design, while psychologist Shayna Kaufmann sold a book on business leadership by her husband Eric while promoting her own forthcoming book, Embrace The Middle.

There were other artists and artisans exhibiting there as well, and we wish that we could have talked to them all.

Don Harrison, San Diego Jewish Worlds publisher and editor, provided much of the information for this article. He sold and signed some of the nine books he has written about Jewish life and heritage in San Diego County, the most recent of which was the three-volume Schlepping and Schmoozing Along the Interstate 5.

Harrison was part of the six-person committee, equally representing the Mens Club and the Sisterhood, that organized the art show. Other committee members were Roz Allina, Ella Cashuk, and Rochelle Rubinstein for the Sisterhood, and Phil Lorang and Ken Reichman for the Mens Club. There was no charge to either exhibitors or attendees, although some money was raised for the synagogue by raffling off items that were donated by the exhibitors and the sale of food items.

* Mimi Pollack is a freelance writer and Fred Kropveld is a freelance photographer whose works have been appreciatively published in San Diego Jewish World.

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Artists' and Artisans' Show Lures Her to a Synagogue - San Diego Jewish World

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