The Messiah

1955

Clay. 10 x 51 x 5 cm

The theme of this relief  panel was  inspired by the Biblical quotation: ‘‘He will hold up a signal to the nations/And assemble the banished of Israel, / And gather the dispersed of Judah/From the four corners of the earth.” [Isaiah 11:12]. The fusion of the miniature with the large scale  composition exudes a tremendous  energy. The floating figure of the  Messiah, carries the Jewish people to the Holy  Land. They are depicted in minuscule  bas-relief. On the top right are the Chassidic Jews who were only allowed to enter the Holy Land in His company.  On the   bottom right are the Yemenites and the Far-Eastern Jews in  their characteristic dress.  On the top left the Eastern European Jews  appear in their traditional costumes  and on the bottom left the Jews of  western Europe are portrayed. Each figure is individually conceived. The work is entirely original, based on the biblical text without an iconographic prototype. The  floating  pose of the Messiah reminds of  the fusion of  melody  and rhythm in the Chassidic dance.

 © Kaplan Centre

Images reproduced by kind permission of Louis Wald

The Life and Art of

HERMAN WALD

(1906-1970)