The personal exhibition of Isaac Vaynschnelboym, the eldest member of the Guild of Jewish Folk Craftsmen took place on October 14, 2018. This even was hosted by Odessa Community of New York, with a help of JASA Senior Alience Center. Odessa, Ukraine – is not only a city where Isaac spent the most of his life, before coming to New York, but also is a place where many famous Jews were born and spent most of their lives. One of them is Isaac Babel, who is depicted on one of portraits drawn by Isaac Vaynschnelboym.
The name of the exhibition is: The Portraits of Great Jews, outstanding in science, literature, and arts.The people, Isaac whose portraits Isaac choose for this presentation are really great and famous Jews. Everybody knows Sholem Aleichem, Marc Schagal, Isaac Babel, Zigmund Freud, just to name a few. This expo had a format of presentation, in which Isaac Vanschnelboym, together Igor Kazatsker – the president of the Odessa community of New York, told the story behind each portrait. The story included the short bio of the the person depicted, what made him known, and what were his contributions to Jewish community. Also Mr Kazatsker read a poem by Semyon Frug, anecdote from the story of Sholom Aleychem, and a sang song about Amadeo Modigliani, who was surprisingly Jew.
From my personal viewpoint – the most memorable greatest Jews and their portraits are:Isaac Babel, Albert Einstein, Marc Schagal,Shalom Alejchem, Simon Frug, and Iosip Mandelshtam.
The portrait of Isaac Babel, I’d consider the most colorful. Besides Babel itself with a very positive face, the portrait depicts the world he lived in. Above the person, there is a combination of Blue Sky and Black Sea, which is proper to Odessa. In a left corner of a picture there are colorful pictures which are either bubbles or balloons, one of which depicts someone’s face. In the left lower corner – we see horses. I believe they symbolize – the Horse Army, which is the story written by Babel. In lower right corner – there is an old fashion automobile, which probably took place in some other stories by Babel.