The Arts Advisory Board of The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) is pleased to announce the panel discussion "'The Trees of the Forest Shall Sing'—But What Is Their Song?," which is taking place in conjunction with the exhibition The Presence of Trees: Photographs by Larry Lederman at JTS. The panel discussion will be held on Thursday, February 20, from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. A reception will precede the panel at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, but reservations are required. RSVP at www.jtsa.edu/trees. For additional information, contact Joan Goodman, director of Lay Leadership at JTS, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (212) 678-8861.
The images in The Presence of Trees: Photographs by Larry Lederman, on view at JTS from January 15 to May 22, 2014, capture the monumentality and exquisite detail of each tree that Lederman photographs. Each offers a surprisingly intimate visual experience that reflects the artist's awe and affection for his subject. "It was trees," notes Lederman, "that brought me directly to photography."
Moved by thoughts similar to Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel's observation that "there are three ways in which we may relate ourselves to the world-we may exploit it, we may enjoy it, we may accept it in awe," Lederman presents photographs of gardens and their trees to JTS as sources of wonder and contemplation for a community traditionally attuned and connected to the land. The February 20 panel discussion, "'The Trees of the Forest Shall Sing'—But What Is Their Song?," whose title refers to 1 Chronicles 16:33, will explore diverse images and meanings of trees through the lenses of three disciplines—landscape architecture, nature photography, and Torah.
Panelists include the artist, Larry Lederman, photographer for the book Magnificent Trees of the New York Botanical Garden and member of the garden's board of advisors; Rabbi Daniel Nevins, Pearl Resnick Dean of The Rabbinical School and dean of the Division of Religious Leadership of JTS; and Deborah Nevins, international landscape designer and head of Deborah Nevins & Associates.
JTS Chancellor Arnold Eisen established the Arts Advisory Board for the purpose of creating and sustaining arts initiatives throughout JTS's five schools. Together with JTS faculty and lay leaders, the board consists of artists and other professionals from a variety of visual, musical, performing, and literary arts organizations, businesses, and foundations across the United States.