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12 Tribes of Israel: Dan - The Judge

12 Tribes of Israel: Dan - The Judge

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G‑d has judged me and also listened to my voice.” (Genesis 30:6)

Rachel named the first child of her nursemaid Bilhah, Dan, a name that embodies the quality of justice. Judgment and justice are about setting boundaries and maintaining objectivity to avoid confusion. Civilization rests on the justice of its laws and its ability to draw clear lines between right and wrong. This painting of Gush Dan, in the Tel Aviv area, shows the natural boundary between sea and land with space for a city to spring up and come into focus. We see the land and water, city and sky, the memory of the past and the glimmerings of a future. The tribe of Dan, the last tribe to travel in the nation’s desert encampment formation, had the task of collecting any items left behind. They are the ones who navigate the boundaries and, while maintaining distinctions, weave together an objective and just point of view.

The unique quality of opal is in its interplay of colors. The tribe of Dan’s gemstone is reflected in the milky haze above the city in the distant horizon, in shimmering water, and in the homes that are scattered beneath us.


Lesley Friedmann’s deep connection to her Jewish heritage and strong ties to the land of Israel influence her art. From her childhood in South Africa, to her teenage years on a kibbutz in Israel, art was always Lesley’s favorite class. She served in the Israeli Armed Forces and then immigrated to Victoria, Canada, where she pursued an undergraduate degree in Art Education and settled down to raise a family of four children with her husband, Bryan. In 2016, Lesley earned her Masters of Arts degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Victoria. Lesley now devotes most of her free time to painting.
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"The primary talent of an artist is his ability to step away from the externalities of the thing and, disregarding its outer form, gaze into its innerness and perceive its essence, and to be able to convey this in his painting.This is how an artist can serve his Creator." — The Rebbe


Lesley FriedmannLesley Friedmann’s deep connection to her Jewish heritage and strong ties to the land of Israel influence her art. From her childhood in South Africa, to her teenage years on a kibbutz in Israel, art was always Lesley’s favorite class. She served in the Israeli Armed Forces and then immigrated to Victoria, Canada, where she pursued an undergraduate degree in Art Education and settled down to raise a family of four children with her husband, Bryan. In 2016, Lesley earned her Masters of Arts degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Victoria. Lesley now devotes most of her free time to painting.
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