SARASOTA, FL – The Hershorin Schiff Community Day School recently received the gift of precious artwork by renowned Israeli artist Amos Amit. The piece, an intricate batik, was donated by school supporters Ed “Papa” and Betty “Mimi” Rosenthal, who recently downsized their home and knew the students would enjoy and benefit from the piece.
Amos Amit was born in Israel in 1945 and was raised in the Galilee. He has established himself as one of the leading batik artists in our country – critics and collectors alike have praised his unique style and highly refined technique, and he was received numerous prestigious national and international awards. His artwork, which has been deeply influenced by his upbringing in Israel, has a modern and colorful feel, with many of his pieces featuring Biblical and natural themes.
The donated artwork, a one-of-a-kind, hand-woven and hand-painted piece, was purchased by the Rosenthals more than 20 years ago, at a Temple Beth Sholom art exhibition featuring Israeli artists. It pictures children and adults celebrating various Jewish holidays and features some of Judaism’s most significant symbols, such as the Torah, shofars and Shabbat candles.
“This piece is so happy and the faces are so full of joy – it is a special celebration of Judaism and being Jewish,” said Betty. “We knew that this piece had to be displayed where children can see it. We hope they will enjoy it for many years to come.”
During the dedication of the piece, Betty spoke about the artist, what the artwork means to her, and why she and Ed wanted to gift it to the school. After the presentation, students were encouraged to express what they felt the artwork conveyed, and then enjoyed Israeli dancing.
The Rosenthals are longtime supporters of Community Day School. The couple established the Papa Ed and Mimi Rosenthal Organic Kibbutz Sustainability Garden and Outdoor Classroom, which the students work and learn in every day; they were also substantial contributors to the Mobile Classroom Van, which takes students on the road for real-life educational opportunities throughout the community. Additionally, their commitment to arts education has made it possible each year for every child to visit Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and experience a theater production.
“We are so fortunate to be the beneficiaries of Ed and Betty’s continued generosity,” said Community Day head of school Dan Ceaser. “It is so appropriate for the children to see and enjoy artwork that honors and celebrates Jewish traditions and culture.”
The mission of Community Day School, which serves students in preschool through eighth grade, is to prepare students of all faiths to impact the world through academic excellence, global citizenship, and compassionate action. For more information, go to CommunityDay.org or call (941) 552-2770.