Hebrew School

Seven Generations

Avishai Mekonen’s Seven Generations opens at the Tisch Gallery this Thursday, February 12.

We’re not talking about the biodegradable dish soap you get at the food coop, people. This is the work of Avishai Mekonen, who’ll be giving a talk at the upper west side JCC’s Tisch Gallery this Thursday starting at 6pm, followed by the official opening. Avishai, a Six Points compatriot, has painstakingly documented, in photo and video, the complexities of Ethiopian Jewry. Tradition and modernity collide. Generations are counted backward as life is counted forward. Plain and simple: No one else is doing this.

Who’s coming? I’ll see you Thursday.

The skinny…

Seven Generations:
Photos and Video by Avishai Mekonen

The Laurie M. Tisch Gallery
The JCC in Manhattan
334 Amsterdam Ave. at 76th St.
New York, NY

On View Feb 12 – Apr 30, 2009

Opening Events: Thu, Feb 12
6-7 pm: Meet the Artist Talk
7-8 pm: Gallery Reception


Jews make love, war, music

It looks things are a little quieter in Israel/Palestine/Gaza, I guess, but I suppose you would really have to be there to know.

My cousin nomadmatan, who made aliyah last year, is there putting in his time in the forces. He’s a master linguist and Arabic translator.

He was twittering just now about arriving to base, mentioning how warm it was. Here in Brooklyn, it is a predictable mix of 2-4 inches of slush. It sometimes seems hard to reconcile his occasional dodging of qassams with my existence here in New York, making weird Jewish music. But I do think we’re both wandering nomads, and for that I love him.

“silence in between the aleinu” – hebrew school (demo)

A walk through Brooklyn’s Chinatown
March 18, 2008, 6:25 am
Filed under: brooklyn, sunset park | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

This past Saturday was sunny and mild. We went for a walk in Brooklyn’s Chinatown in Sunset Park. Centered along Eighth Avenue, roughly between 40th and 60th streets, it’s home to a bustling community that had its start in the ’80s, becoming New York’s “third Chinatown” along with lower Manhattan and Flushing, Queens. According to what I read, Chinese-Americans may have been attracted to 8th Avenue in Brooklyn because the number eight is similar to a word in Chinese for prosperity (發, fā), making it an auspicious number in Chinese culture. Or, it could have been that it’s a direct ride from the city on the N train, providing an express link to Manhattan’s Chinatown (much as the D train links Boro Park with the Diamond District, but that’s the subject of another post).

Me, I’ve always found it interesting that there are several Chinese neighborhoods around the world with sunny names: There’s the Sunset District in San Francisco (which seems to have followed a similar pattern in its formation as an alternate Chinatown), and Sunnybank, Brisbane in Australia, yet another offshoot to a larger Chinatown community.


Live frogs are $3.99 a pound at this seafood shop.






More Sunset Park:   donuts  *  pork  *  beer