Friday, November 20, 2015

Christians have 10 Commandments, but Archie Rand illustrates Judaism's 613

By Daniel Akst
Lots of people try to live by the Ten Commandments. Only the Jews have to cope with 613. Archie Rand has said (as quoted by the Religion News Service): “I don’t want to make paintings that were about Jewishness, but that are Jewish.”Perhaps his most ambitious effort in this direction is a series of paintings he calls “The 613.” Working from a list drawn up by the 12th-century philosopher Maimonides, Mr. Rand spent five years creating a visual analogue for each and every mitzvah. All the paintings are 20 inches by 16 inches, framed by a painted gold border, designated with a Hebrew number indicating the mitzvot to which they correspond, and executed in a colorful, dynamic style heavily influenced by classic American comics. Mr. Rand has now published these vivid works in a hefty book titled “The 613.” [link]