Hyman Bloom

A Spiritual Embrace

December 1, 2006 — March 11, 2007

Members' Preview: Thursday, November 30, 6 - 8 p.m.

The following is excerpted from the exhibition catalog Hyman Bloom A Spiritual Embrace, essay by Katherine French.

Hyman Bloom began painting rabbis at the end of the nineteen thirties, using them as a metaphor for his own spiritual questioning. They confront the viewer with wide, expressive eyes. Their arms encircle the Torah, holding it close to the chest. “I decided to paint what I knew,” Bloom observes, shrugging off the irony that he would make what might be considered religious art. “It was a good subject to paint. I don’t think anyone else has painted this subject from the imagination. As far as I know, nobody has painted them from memory.”1

1Hyman Bloom in conversation with the author, May 9, 2006.

Boston Expressionism at the Danforth Museum of Art

Hyman Bloom, Rabbi with Tora, Oil on canvas, 72 x 54 inches, c. 1955
Rabbi with Torah, c. 1955
Oil on canvas, 72 x 54 inches
Courtesy of Joan and Barry Bloom

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