It will look like any other Israeli celebration. Israeli music will blare in the background. The Israeli flag will be raised, followed by a few (short) speeches. Freebie sunglasses and kova tembel hats will be distributed. There will even be guided tours of Israeli hotspots — on flying carpets.
Yes, you read that right. The party will take place this Sunday at 1 p.m. in Second Life, an Internet-based 3-D virtual world that boasts nearly 12 million users. More than 100 Second Lifers are expected to get their keyboards out and party.
Editor’s Note: This is the first in an occasional series profiling Jewish entrepreneurs who are making their mark here in a variety of business ventures.
Move over, Madonna. Ken Goldman is the latest name in kabbalistic lore. Well, at least when it comes to toys.
Hitler is coming to a theater near you. A film about the Fuehrer's younger years as a struggling artist opens Dec. 27 on both coasts, and nationwide in February. New York audiences can catch a preview of "Max," which stars John Cusack as the one-armed Jewish art dealer Max Rothman, at the JCC in Manhattan on Dec. 19.
Mass gatherings of Israeli youth known as "raves," may bring to mind a besotted Bacchanalia, but a proponent of the popular celebrations says present a spiritual side of Israeli life that can combat the negative images being broadcast from the region.
Berlin: The memory of World War II crops up in unexpected places here. In idyllic-looking neighborhood parks, at busy intersections and along the streets in lively neighborhoods, one is suddenly confronted with a reminder of the city's bloody past: plaques, small monuments and conceptual art installations recall Berlin's former life as the home of some 173,000 Jewish citizens and their fate under the Third Reich.
Two uniformed guards recently stopped Michal Rovner as she tried to enter the third-floor galleries at the Whitney Museum of American Art. "We're sorry, ma'am," Rovner said she was told, "the galleries are closed." To get through security, the diminutive Israeli-born artist simply looked up. Taped to the wall (in expectation of an upcoming exhibition) was a sign bearing her name.
The Rothko Chapel in Houston, Texas, is an austere space for ecumenical meditation. One of the oil town's most famous landmarks, its walls are adorned with 14 monumental paintings by the Russian-born artist Mark Rothko, rendered in his definitive style of floating patches of color: in this case, black, deep brown and purple. The art patron Dominique de Menil, who commissioned the space and its somber paintings, reportedly said the works evoke "the mystery of the cosmos, the tragic mystery of our perishable condition, [and] the silence of god, the unbearable silence of God."