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September 18, 2014 | 23rd Elul 5774

Tikvah

Infomation on AIDS Quilts by John Hirsch

"TIKVAH"

1. The wine-colored background represents the wine we drink for Kiddush in praise of God for creation.

2. The quilt is bordered by "Jerusalem stone" in the form of an unbroken link of chain indicating that we are all part of the unbroken chain of Jewish history.

3. These "stones," like the stones of the Western Wall (Kotel), can hold our prayers.  Each "stone" should be sewn only 3/4 around thus leaving a pocket into which little pieces of paper with private prayers can be slipped by those attending the Biennial.  Before presentation, the "stones" will be sewn closed.

4. One "stone" appears to be crumbling--representative of what AIDS is doing to one segment of the Jewish people.  However, it crumbles into the shape of a "shin" for Shaddai and our unwavering faith in God.

5. The Talit and candelabra represent Jewish Men and Women.  The Tzitzit are directed toward the four corners of  the quilt to indicate that Gay Jews, like all other Jews, are part of the diaspora--spread to the four corners of the earth.

6. The Talit is appliqued onto the background in the shape of a "living garment," suggesting that it is draped around the shoulders of a Jew hunched-over in prayer.

7. A portion of the Talit, this living garment, appears to be broken off, representing those Jews we have already lost to AIDS.

8. The candles are lit, as they are lit for Shabbat, representing "Tikvah" -- hope.  Light dispels darkness and ignorance.

9. The word "Tikvah," in Hebrew, appears to be almost quietly rising out of the panel as Hope should rise from our very being.

10."UAHC AIDS COMMITTEE" is embroidered onto a black  grosgrain ribbon which has been torn and appears to be pinned onto the quilt panel in a manner in which a Rabbi pins a piece of torn black grosgrain ribbon (Keriah) on a mourner's lapel at a funeral. 


"TIKVAH 2"

1. As in "Tikvah," the wine-colored background represents the wine we drink for Kiddush in praise of God for creation.

2. The central focus of this quilt is the Menorah--the historical and universal symbol of the Jewish People.

3. The Menorah sits on a wall of "Jerusalem stone" indicating our connection with the unbroken history of the Jewish People.

4. These "stones," like the stones of the Western Wall (Kotel), held our prayers in the previous quilt.  

5. As before, one "stone" appears to be crumbling--representative of what AIDS is doing to one segment of the Jewish people.  However, it crumbles into the shape of a "shin" for Shaddai and our unwavering faith in God.

6. Hope flowers from our prayers in the form of tiny blue Forget-Me-Not blossoms flowering between the stones.

7. As light dispels darkness and ignorance--the candles of the Menorah are lit--representing "Tikvah" (hope).

8. The word "Zachor," in Hebrew (remember), appears to be quietly rising as a trail of smoke from an extinguished candle.  This extinguished candle represents that segment of the Jewish People lost to AIDS.

9. "URJC/CCAR AIDS COMMITTEE REMEMBERS THOSE WE'VE LOST" is embroidered in grey at the very top of the quilt as the broken trail of smoke forms these words.

10. Two black grosgrain ribbons appear to be tied around the Menorah.  They represent the black grosgrain which we tear in memory and mourning (Keriah).  We have added a second ribbon to the one used in the first quilt. The ends of these ribbons point to the four corners of the quilt as we Jews are part of the diaspora--spread to the four corners of the earth.

In this crisis, we tear our ribbons into words of hope  -- TIKVAH.
 

 

 

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