To get a sense of the overall design and conception, please watch our video.
The Amichai Windows, a limited edition artist book of Yehuda Amichai poems, opens a window onto love, war, being Jewish in the 20th century and life in Israel.
Each poem is wrapped and folded in an individual, handmade paper triptych and collected in an enclosure resembling a Jerusalem window.
“. . . a towering achievement in American arts and letters . . .” Aharon Yermiyahu Taub in his review for the American Jewish Libraries newsletter.
“A visual and tactile feast—not only does one become immersed in the words and images but one must reveal and discover the poems, too . . . a marvelous experience and a must for fine artist book collectors.” Andi Arnovitz, American Israeli printmaker, book artist and multi-media artist
“An exquisite presentation of 18 Amichai poems lovingly crafted . . .” Robert Alter, Hebrew literary translator and critic
“A national treasure.” Micha Bar-Am, award-winning Magnum and New York Times photographer
“I am still in awe of the entire production. I continue to look at each poem, one by one, studying the images, with great admiration for the entire creative process.” Gary Rendsburg, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Professor of Jewish History, Rutgers University
When one opens each triptych, one discovers a different world within. This artist book incorporates replicas of some of Amichai’s original, handwritten poems as well as collaged images of Jewish history and life have been culled from archives around the world. A special introduction has been written by Hebrew literary critic and translator, Professor Robert Alter.
One of the great modern Hebrew poets, Amichai sang of the everyday experiences of private individuals caught in the middle of war and historical events. His poems have been translated into more than 30 languages.
In the works for 10 years, this artist book has been issued in a limited edition of 18 copies. All of the poems have been letterpressed and blind embossments have been hidden in the design. Gold leaf has been used to highlight some of the poems and design elements. Special papercuts have been done by Debra Band.
This artist book is still available for purchase; discount is available for institutions. A few select individual spreads are also still available in our store.
To schedule Rick Black for a virtual program, please contact him directly via email or phone on our contact page.
A few poetic spreads of The Amichai Windows will be part of an upcoming Jewish art exhibition, “Jewish Authenticity and Identity,” at Adas Israel congregation in Washington, DC. The show, which is curated by Prof. Ori Soltes and organized by Day Eight, will run from April 5 to May 14 by appointment only. There also will be an online component of the exhibition. More information will become available on the synagogue’s website.
GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY, WASHINGTON, DC A scheduled visit to the literature class of Professor David Ebanbach to discuss The Amichai Windows had to be postponed because of the virus. We will be rescheduling this talk when time allows.
To discuss the possibility of doing your own program, you can reach rick at: rick at amichaiwindows dot com.
RECENT EXHIBITIONS & PROGRAMS
March 2021 – RUTGERS UNIVERSITY, NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ A webinar on The Amichai Windows took place on Sunday, March 7, in conversation with Rutgers Jewish Studies Prof. Gary A. Rendsburg, who helped with the translation. The event was sponsored by the Bildner Center for the Study of Jewish Life. You can watch a recording of the program here.
January 2021 – A special zoom session, The Amichai Windows: A Poetic Work of Art, was held on January 6, 2021. Sponsored by Pozez JCC of Northern Virginia, it included an interview with Rick Black as well as readings of Amichai’s poems and comments.
September-October 2020 – Rick was the featured artist of the College Book Art Association in September-October 2020. You can see many of the spreads of this work there as well as an artist statement.
MANHATTAN FINE PRESS BOOK FAIR, Saturday, March 7, 2020. As part of New York’s Rare Book Week, we had a booth here just as the corona virus was beginning to make its impact. Even so, top book artists and presses come from around the country to showcase their work. To learn about this year’s exhibitors, take a look at the webpage of the Fine Press Book Association.
DC-ALT, ASSOCIATION OF LITERARY TRANSLATORS, WASHINGTON, DC, Sunday, Feb 9, 2020. Rick enjoyed sharing The Amichai Windows with a small group of literary translators. He gave them a small sample of the visuals and then delved into some of the translation issues that he faced. Aside from the intricacies of translating from Hebrew to English, he also sought out the original drafts of Amichai’s poems at Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.
INTERSECTIONS, CBAA CONFERENCE, NEW ORLEANS, LA, Jan 2 – 4, 2020. We had a wonderful time meeting other book artists, getting ideas for future projects and how to engage the public in book arts in New Orleans. We also were able to squeeze in a visit to the New Orleans Jazz Museum down by the waterfront and really savored the food.
HIGHLAND PARK CONSERVATIVE TEMPLE, HIGHLAND PARK, NJ, Sunday, May 19, 2019. Book artist Rick Black gave a talk and slide show at the Highland Park Conservative Temple in Highland Park, NJ. He and Shula Minsky read poems in Hebrew and English, and then Rick discussed his connection with Yehuda Amichai and the making of The Amichai Windows.
Entitled “The Amichai Windows: A Morning of Poetry and Art,” the program was free for synagogue members. For more information, please click on the following link: Rick Black Talk May 19,2019
MANHATTAN FINE PRESS BOOK FAIR, Saturday, March 9, 2019. As part of New York’s Rare Book Week, the fair showcased top presses from around the world. It was held at the Church of St. Vincent Ferrer, 869 Lexington Ave. at 66th Street. You can learn more about the sponsor, the Fine Press Book Association, here.
BOOKLYN ARTISTS’ BOOK FAIR, Saturday, March 9, and Sunday, March 10. The fair featured some of the top book artists from around the country, including Colette Fu, Robin Price, Maria Pisano and many others. You can take a look at some of the work here.
BEINECKE RARE BOOK AND MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY, YALE UNIVERSITY, NEW HAVEN, CT – An exhibition and talk by book artist Rick Black was held at the Beinecke on Tuesday, October 30. Joining him for the program, Windows in the Poetry of Yehuda Amichai, were Yale professors Shiri Goren and Katie Trumpener as well as Amichai translator Barbara Harshav. To see pictures of the event, please check out our blog post here.
TMOL SHILSHOM, JERUSALEM, ISRAEL – A special book launch party of The Amichai Windows was held on Sunday, May 6, 2018 at this literary landmark cafe where Yehuda Amichai used to hang out. Book artist Rick Black was joined by Hana Amichai and Prof. Ariel Hirschfeld of the Hebrew Literature department of Hebrew University, who spoke about Amichai’s ouevre and the visual arts in poetry. Please check out the photos on our blog here.
PYRAMID ATLANTIC BOOK ARTS FAIR – We had a booth at the 14th biennial book arts fair and conference, the preeminent book arts event on the east coast. The art center address is Pyramid Atlantic, 4318 Gallatin Street, Hyattsville, MD. For more information please call Pyramid Atlantic at: 301.608.9101 or take a look at their website.
PYRAMID ATLANTIC ART CENTER, MARYLAND – A special book launch and exhibition took place on Sunday, February 18, at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center in Hyattsville, MD. As part of the afternoon, Rick gave an artist’s talk that was followed by a panel discussion with two honored guests: Helen Frederick, artist, national and international art curator, educator, arts advocate and founder of Pyramid Atlantic Art Center; and Judith K. Brodsky, artist, printmaker and founder of the Brodsky Paper Center at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
You can see photos from the exhibition here.