The tragedy of the Sassoon family deeply disturbed me. How could such a thing happen? I meditated on the idea that all of Israel is one body, we are all connected. When one of us hurts, the pain spreads to us all. And we also conversely can lift each other up.
The father Gavriel Sassoon, in his remarkable ability to turn his tragedy into a way to help other, epitomizes that idea. Despite his pain, shown through the ten circles that surround his heart- 7 of which are in red, symbolizing his lost children, the other 3 symbolizing his remaining family- he continues to push to spread joy (which “Sasson" also means in Hebrew) throughout the world.
As I was working on the piece, I had an urge to do orange up and down the side of his body. Only after I was done, did I realize it looked like fire surrounding him, like the fire that BDE killed his children, and the fire of passion that remains in his heart to live and to serve. May we all feel connected and uplifted by each other.
36 X 36
Oil on canvas