Thursday, May 19, 2011

Lunchtime Adventure - Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art

As a resident of Midtown Memphis who works Downtown, I have discovered many out of the way places, restaurants and attractions that others have ignored or simply knew nothing about. Yesterday, I decided to visit the Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art during my lunch break. I had no idea what to expect, only that I was in for an hour of art. How wrong I was. If you live in Memphis or are visiting our fair city, you need to do yourself a favour and visit this museum. For $6 a person, you can view highly detailed pieces of carved jade, ivory and cloisonné made with human hands without the use of power tools. Most of the Asian art came from the Qing dynasty (1644-1911) and it is a fair representation of the culture during that time. The Jewish section was highly educational for me and the pieces reflected the history of the Jews. Several of the artists that I found to be quite striking were Boris Shapiro (Flying Fiddler), Mark Tochilikin, Reuven Rubin (Musicians of Safed) and Ofra Friedland (Holocaust Memorial). There were other pieces reflecting passages and stories from the Torah and I found myself trying to remember the stories behind them. All in all, it was a well-spent lunch hour although I could have easily spent another two hours in the museum.

Happy Exploring!

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