Bruria Finkel

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About the Artist

Bruria Finkel’s artwork deals with concepts of cycles and time, ecology, women’s issues and tikkun olam, a Hebrew phrase meaning “mend the world.” Her art contains sacred geometry, language, and symbolism, both in abstract and familiar imagery.

A multidisciplinary artist, Finkel works in handmade paper sculpture, art books, paintings, and bronze sculpture. Recent artworks include oil pastel on wood veneer. For more than 60 years, Finkel has created permanent public art and temporary art installations. Her art has been shown in numerous exhibitions in U.S. and international museums and galleries, and is included in the Smithsonian Archives in Washington, DC.

THE DIVINE CHARIOT, 1981-2004.  Bronze, patina; 18’ x 15’ platform with four bronze sculptures at 8’ x 30” each.

Statement About Work

In 1966 I was introduced to the writings of Avraham Abulafia, Kabbalist, rabbi, poet and mystic who lived in 13th century Spain. My friend, Poet Laureate Jack Hirschman, asked me to create an English translation of Abulafia’s Hebrew text “Sefer Ha-Ot.” Inspired by this and the Ezekiel prophesies, The Divine Chariot is my interpretation of the myths and imagery conjured up while translating Abulafia’s work.

The Divine Chariot consists of four bronze sculptures with symbols and imagery of real and imagined stories from religious writings and historic tales in Jewish history. Created over a span of 23 years, from 1981 to 2004, the work is designed to be installed outdoors on an 18’ x 15’ stone platform. The installation includes a water element and a platform carving. This carving, which includes an opportunity to commemorate a significant date, will be synchronized with the movements of the sun and shadows created by the sculptures. 

Each sculpture’s wheel and triangular stand has an individual symbolic meaning. Powerful imagery, including innocence, power, angelic aspects, transformation, alchemy, transition, creation, family and community, are depicted. Each of the four sculptures is individually titled as follows:

Wheel One: “Divine Influx-Bliss,” Garden of Eden, innocence, sky and trees

Wheel Two: “Placement of Power,” the Angels Michael, Gabriel, Ariel and Rafael, the lion, eagle and ram

Wheel Three: “Power of One,” the prophet Ezekiel, the alchemical star, transformation, the simplicity of “one”

Wheel Four: “Power of Many,” hands working together, the standing of one within a community.

We are seeking a permanent installation location for The Divine Chariot sculpture. This important work will create a unique destination for meditation and relief, engaging all of the human senses, light, sound, and memory contemplation.