Israel Fest to feature tapestries that weave a tale of Jewish Pilgrimage

by | May 20, 2016 | What’s Happening

Sunday, June 5, 11 am–4 pm

During the Spanish Inquisition in the 16th century, the Monzon family from Monzon, Spain, was one of many Jewish families expelled from their homes. This displaced family wandered around Europe seeking a new home in Russia where they lived for generations. In 1830, a patriarch of this family, Abraham Leib Monzon, left Russia for Israel. Monzon acquired great respect among community members in Jerusalem and became the Shamash (the assistant to the Hassidic Rabbi) of the Hurvah Synagogue.

Monzon’s grandchildren became the first to open a printing press for artistic lithographs in Israel. With this press, these two brothers printed holy books in the Jewish Quarter of the old City of Jerusalem.

Today, in Israel, Moshe Monzon, a modern abstract artist, upholds his family’s honor with his beautiful tapestries.

Entirely hand-made of synthetic materials, 300 colors result from the felt and colorfast dyes. The artist places individual strips of felt on top of one another, and then on a special loom, he completes the final product.

Various hues depicting the Jewish State sweep through Monzon’s abstract landscapes. Golden horizons melt into rich Israeli earth tones. The deepest blues reflecting starry night skies stretch across vast desert lands leading to lush green fields.

Monzon’s works are as colorful as the tale of his family’s journey from exile to the Promised Land, spanning 500 years.

Monzon, along with his artwork, will exhibit at the Simon Family JCC’s annual Israel Fest, sponsored by Charles Barker Automotive. His work will be on display through June 7 at the JCC.

For more information about Israel Fest, contact Michele Goldberg, director of cultural arts at the JCC, at or 757-321-2341.

For more information about Moshe Monzon, go to

by Gaby Grune