Silk Flower Works
ופרש עלינו סכת שלומך
And Spread Your Canopy of Peace Over Us
1.60 x 1.60 x 14cm silk and plastic suspended from ceiling at height of 2m.
A special time for prayer is at the onset of Shabbat at sundown on Friday. The title is taken from the standard Friday evening prayer service. This is a time when tradition has it that the Lord is open to supplication, and the individual becomes part of a community, both in the narrow parochial sense but also the national Jewish meaning as people all around the world use the same word formulae to welcome the Sabbath in oneness and unity.
This work is one way of representing the prayer to G-d that He should spread over us, our families and the whole community all good things- health, joy, and especially peace.
Created out of silk and plastic flowers, the work’s multi-hued and variously shaped elements stand for G-d’s great and varied bounties, which we wish to draw down upon all our heads.
silk and plastic [400x300cm]
Gan Eden Mikedem
This phrase is taken from the 6th of the 7 Blessings which form part of our wedding ceremony, and our sources explain that the hope and prayer is that the new couple will achieve domestic harmony and be as happy as Adam and Eve were at the start of their union, when they were blessed by God (Genesis 1:22).
‘Gan Eden’ is usually translated as the Garden of Paradise. Mikedem can mean ‘in the East’, where tradition has it that plants thrive best; or alternatively Mikedem can mean ‘from before’ or ‘primordial’ and this reading holds that the Garden of Eden was planted by God Himself, prior to Creation (Genesis 2:8; Psalms 104:16).
I have chosen to express the idea of a Garden of Paradise through an abundance of silk flowers, whose many colours and varied shapes here symbolize all manner of bounty for which we yearn and pray.