2/28 EVENT | “Muestros Artistas” [Our Artists]
Tuesday, February 28, 6:30 pm PST - 9:00 pm PST
Image: ‘The Inquisition’ by Ellen Benjoya Skotheim.
Watch the program now:
“Muestros Artistas” [Our Artists] brings six Sephardic American artists together for the first time in Seattle to share their work with each other, with our community, and to explore what it means to create Sephardic art in the 21st century.
Join us for a celebration of Sephardic art, music, poetry and prose. “Muestros Artistas” [Our Artists] brings six Sephardic American artists together for the first time in Seattle to share their work with each other, with our community, and to explore what it means to create Sephardic art in the 21st century.
Featured artists include:
- Asher Shasho Levy — musician and hazzan
- Ellen Benjoya Skotheim — multidisciplinary artist
- Harry Naar — painter
- Jane Mushabac — playwright and writer
- Sarah Aroeste — singer-songwriter and author
- Tom Haviv — writer, artist, and publisher
On Tuesday, February 28, the two-day symposium event will culminate in a showcase that’s free and open to the public. There, you can enjoy Sephardic fare, artist performances and a panel discussion led by Gabriel Solis, Divisional Dean of the Arts.
The event will be held on the University of Washington’s Seattle campus in the Walker Ames room in Kane Hall, and later in Kane Hall 210. Doors open at 6:30 P.M.
View the recording here.
Presented by the Sephardic Studies Program and Stroum Center for Jewish Studies.
Supported by the Hazzan Isaac Azose Fund for Community Engagement in Sephardic Studies.
Co-sponsored by HillelUW and the Division of the Arts at the University of Washington.
About the artists
Oudist, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist Asher Shasho-Levy is a Syrian Jewish musician and scholar of Sephardic heritage and culture, who seeks to spread the beauty of the Sephardic tradition through his writing, recording, research, and concerts. He performs and teaches internationally and is the founder and leader of the Aram Soba Ensemble, a group dedicated to the musical heritage of Syrian Jewry. Studying with elders and scholars in the Sephardic community of Los Angeles, Asher has amassed a large repertoire of liturgical music, secular song in Hebrew and Judeo-Arabic, as well as piyyutim, pizmonim and baqashot, the religious poetry and song of the Jewish Middle East.
A Personal Odyssey from Maimonides to Benjoya bridges the gap between art and life, the ancestral and the contemporary. Ms. Ellen Benjoya Skotheim’s work combines prints, artist books and textiles to examine her Sephardic family’s history. This Jewish family left Spain during the Spanish Inquisition in 1492 and migrated to the Ottoman Empire where they remained until the beginning of World War I. Then the family emigrated to Cuba, South America and the United States. Using a personal lens, these works focus on a 500 year period of history.
Harry Naar is professor emeritus of Fine Arts at Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ, where he taught drawing, painting, and art history for nearly forty years. He served as the founder and director of the university’s art gallery and curator of the art collection. Along with curating several hundred exhibitions, Naar has conducted interviews and written and published catalogs on numerous artists. Born in New Brunswick, NJ, he received his BFA from the Philadelphia College of Art (University of the Arts) and his MFA from Indiana University. He also studied in Paris where he met frequently with the figurative painter Jean Hélion. Naar is best known for his still lifes and landscapes, and has exhibited his work in over thirty one-person exhibitions and over a hundred group exhibitions throughout the country, including at the Corcoran Museum (D.C.), the High Museum (Atlanta), the NJ State Museum (Trenton), and abroad, including in Moscow and Havana. His work is also included in numerous public and private art collections, including the American Academy of Arts and Letters which awarded him the Hassam, Speicher, Betts and Symons Fund Purchase Award, Bristol Myers Squibb Co., Vassar College, The New Jersey State Museum, Rutgers University, and Johnson & Johnson.
Tom Haviv is a writer, artist, educator, and publisher based in New York. He authored a book of poetry, Flag of No Nation (Jewish Currents, 2019), and the children’s books, Woven (Somewhere, 2018) and The Porcupine Prince (Somewhere, 2023). He is the cofounder and creative director of Ayin Press as well as the founder of the Hamsa Flag Project.
The University of Washington is committed to providing access and accommodation in its services, programs, and activities. To make a request connected to a disability or health condition contact Grace Dy at (206) 543-0138 or firstname.lastname@example.org at least 10 days before the event.