The Sofer Artist Reception
Excerpts from Rosabel Rosalind's 185-page multi-generational narrative about her relationship with her Zayde (grandfather), a retired Orthodox rabbi. The artwork is hand-painted with beet juice, citing her Zayde's affinity for Manischewitz brand borscht.
Time & Location:
Mar 11, 2024, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM
Rodef Shalom Jewish Museum, 4905 Fifth Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA
The Sofer is a multi-generational narrative about Rosabel Rosalind's relationship with Zayde, her grandfather, a retired Orthodox rabbi with whom she lived for the first twelve years of her life. Fragmented by time and memory, the story recounts details from the years Zayde and Rosalind lived as roommates, interspersed with historical reimaginings and stark cultural observations that span past and present.
The book follows Zayde and Rosalind, as she came of age in a conservative Jewish household and as she continues to come to terms with her Jewishness today. The Sofer is about the haunting of memory, history, and tradition in the face of a resurgence of anti-Semitism, through an intimate and inherited perspective.
The original manuscript of The Sofer is 185 pages and is entirely hand-painted with beet juice, citing Zayde's affinity for Manischewitz brand borscht and the complexities of diasporic Jewishness. Sofer, translates to a Jewish scribe of ancient texts, and it is also Rosalind's maternal name; her Zayde’s last name. Thus she transcribed the familial, ancestral, and historical, using an untraditional hand-made ink, per scribal ritual, with a combination of painting and comic techniques and specific Sofer lettering of Rosalind's design.
About the artist:
Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, Rosabel Rosalind received her BFA in printmaking, painting, and drawing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2017. In 2018, Rosalind received a Fulbright Austria Research Grant to work with the Jewish Museum Vienna’s Schlaff Collection of antisemitic postcards. As a result of this research, she exhibited in solo exhibitions at Vienna's MuseumsQuartier and Improper Walls Gallery. She has been included in group exhibitions at the Jewish Museum of Maryland, the McDonough Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Miller Institute of Contemporary Art. Her work has been included in a solo booth at NADA New York 2023 and at PCC Gallery in Pittsburgh, PA. In 2023, Rosalind received her MFA at Carnegie Mellon University.
This exhibit is a program of the Music and More at Rodef Shalom series. The series is supported in part by a grant from Seth Stark in memory of his father, Sidney Stark, Jr.