Crossing The Bridge

Catalogs on sale at The Bridge opening in Paris
Catalogs on sale at The Bridge opening in Paris

At about 4 PM on Sunday, February 8th, people began to fill the chapel of Saint Germain des Pres for the official VIP opening and reception for The Bridge/Le Pont exhibition. The challenges of installing the show (as I mentioned in my previous blog) were behind us and the Big Reveal was upon us.

There was a buzz of excitement in the air along with a tantalizing mix of languages as the guest list reflected the multi-cultural nature of the exhibition itself. It was a very successful evening – lots of great feedback, stimulating conversation, press interest and most importantly, general support for the mission of fostering communication and respect between different cultures, faiths and creeds. 

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Paul-Gordon Chandler, founder of CARAVAN with the artists present at the opening
Paul-Gordon Chandler, founder of CARAVAN with the artists present at the opening (myself included, on right)

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The Deputy Director of UNICEF opened the program and once my part of the official ceremony was behind me (the speech I gave in French went off as smoothly as can be expected) I was able to relax and enjoy the canapes and drinks provided by ‘Madame Chef’ catering. This was a wonderful start to the long journey ahead for the 47 paintings – Cairo, London, Barcelona, Rome and the United States have yet to host this traveling show. Bon voyage!

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Caravan - Abbaye de Saint-Germain-des-Pre¦üs_62Photography:

Karel Steiner

Alan Merbaum

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Vive la liberté!

When freedom of expression is muzzled, Art withers and dies. We cannot allow our culture to be terrorized and blackmailed. We must stand together to defend our heritage of freedom and creative expression. In the wake of the tragic terrorist attacks in Paris, France, it is uncannily timely to announce the upcoming interfaith, peace-building art exhibition in which I will be participating and have played the role of co-curator. The exhibition is titled The Bridge (Le Pont) and will open in Paris at the historic Church of Saint Germain des Pres, the oldest church in Paris.

Bridge Poster-Final 040115

I will be traveling to Paris to help set up the show. The exhibition will act as an emissary of peace, traveling from Paris to Brussels, Rome, London, Cairo and the United States for 18 months. I am very honored to have played a key role and to be exhibiting my own painting alongside 46 artists of Arab, Persian and Jewish backgrounds. Below is the image of my painting entitled Narrow Bridge followed by my brief artist’s statement that explains how I found inspiration for this painting in the wise words of a hassidic mystic from the 18th century….

MILGROM Narrow bridge

ARTIST STATEMENT ON ‘NARROW BRIDGE’

“The whole world is a narrow bridge.

The main thing to remember is not to be afraid.”

Rabbi Nachman of Bratislav (1772-1810)

Within minutes of being invited to participate in The Bridge exhibition, the words of a popular Hebrew song began playing in my mind: Kol ha’olam kulo gesher tzar me’od, v’haikar lo lefached. (The whole world is a narrow bridge. The main thing to remember is not to be afraid). I was surprised to learn that these words are attributed to the rabbinical sage, Rabbi Nachman of Bratislav, born in Ukraine in the 18th century and the great-grandson of the founder of Hassidism, a mystical branch of Orthodox Judaism.

These few words have survived intact over the centuries yet they capture the essence of this exhibition. If ever there has was a time to reach across cultures, religions, borders and peoples in order to pull the world back from the brink, it is NOW. My painting ‘Narrow Bridge’ is a crude reminder that in order to bridge our differences we must conquer our fears and reach a hand across that narrow bridge without looking down.

Lilianne Milgrom

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IF YOU FIND YOURSELF IN PARIS IN THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY PLEASE JOIN US IN FORGING UNDERSTANDING AND PEACE THROUGH ART. MORE INFORMATION ON THE EXHIBITION HERE.

YOUR COMMENTS WELCOME AT THIS DIFFICULT TIME.

General Invite Paris -English

 

Can Art heal the world?

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I am a realist. I highly doubt that Art can heal the world.

But I am also a citizen of the world and an artist. If I don’t try to make a difference in the only way I know how, then I may as well raise my arms in defeat. Despite the constant barrage of tragic news coming from all corners of the globe, I still cling to the hope and belief in the common thread of humanity that connects us all. That’s why I am delighted to be participating in AMEN – A Prayer for the World, an interfaith, intercultural exhibition organized by the CARAVAN NGO, bringing together Egyptian and Western artists of all faiths and creeds.

Invitation to Exhibition --CARAVAN

AMEN: A Prayer for the World is opening to the public tomorrow at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC and then moving onto the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in NYC in October. The 48 artists were provided with a life sized fiberglass form of a figure in prayer to do with as we saw fit. I transformed my figure into a receptacle for accepting digital prayers to send to the Cloud. Prayer, after all, is a universal dialogue and I wanted to provide the viewer with a chance to send his or her prayer out to the world. It certainly can’t hurt.

MILGROM front view

MILGROM detail II

MILGROM back view

I URGE YOU TO TAKE 10 SECONDS TO SCAN THE QR CODE OR GO TO VIRTUALANGEL.WEEBLY.COM TO PARTICIPATE IN MY INTERACTIVE INSTALLATION. And if you can come to DC or NY to see this meaningful exhibition, you will be fascinated by the different ways in which artists interpret prayer. 

Angel QR for printing

I will be present at the National Cathedral in Washington DC on SEPTEMBER 20, 2014 BETWEEN 1-3 PM. I hope to see you there. Have a Blessed Day!