Oil on Canvas
Oil on Canvas

Artist’s Statement: This painting is one of three I made in response to a piece of music composed by Professor Jeanne Zaidel Rudolph, the present head of music at the University of Witwatersrand, and a member of the Chabad community in Johannesburg.

The Juggler and the King is a piano duet with two voices, representing two levels within a person’s character. The Juggler is the lower, materialistic, frivolous self, contrasted with the King, which is the noble, dignified, higher self.

In my painting I portray the majestic qualities of the Two Great Luminaries. The Talmud (Chullin 60b) explains that the sun and the moon were originally the same size. The moon protested, “Master of the Universe, is it possible for two kings to utilize the same crown?”
G‑d said to her, “(Indeed,) go and diminish yourself!”
After offering a number of consolations and seeing that the moon was not mollified, G‑d instructed His people, “Bring an atonement on My behalf for having diminished the moon.” This atonement is the goat brought as a sin offering on Rosh Chodesh.

We also know that when Moshiach comes, the moon will be restored to her full luminosity (Isaiah 30:26).

I abstractly depict a relationship that is not a power struggle, that’s not about conflict or short-circuiting. This is marriage in its mature stage, where polar opposite energies, male and female (sun and moon), interact interdependently with respect, dignity, equality and synergy.