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Israelis You Should Know: David Resnick

Yad Kennedy, by architect David Resnick (Photo: flickr/jerandsar)

Lived: August 5, 1924 - November 4, 2012

Known for: Noted Israeli architect and town planner who won the Israel Prize and is known as one of the Jewish state's most celebrated modern architects.

Why you should know him: Born to a Jewish family in Rio de Janeiro, David Resnick was hired by Oscar Niemeyer - the greatest Brazilian architect of the 20th century - while he was still a student. Resnick learned under Niemeyer for four years, and while still in Brazil met and married his wife Rachel.

In 1949, David and Rachel made aliyah to the newly independent state of Israel and settled on a kibbutz. For the first two years in Israel, Resnick farmed the fields of the kibbutz instead of pursuing architecture. After this, though, he moved to Tel Aviv and then Jerusalem, to continue his career, starting his own firm in 1958.

Two of Resnick's notable buildings are at Hebrew University. One is the Einstein Institute of Mathematics, while the other is the Rabbi Dr. I. Goldstein Synagogue, which has been named one of the ten most beautiful synagogues in all of Israel.

Resnick also designed the war memorial of 1974-77, Hebrew University's Mount Scopus campus, the Antiquities Museum in Hatzor, the Soldiers Home, the Israel National Academy of Sciences, and Yad Kennedy, seen above, which is Israel's monument to the American president and friend of the Jewish state after he was assassinated in 1963.

Not only content with designing buildings, Resnick also planned towns and neighborhoods in the Holy Land, including Kiryat Hasidim, Hatzor Haglilit, Modi'in, Beit Shemesh, and Nayot, designed between 1959 and 1962 for olim (immigrants) from English-speaking countries.

Resnick continued to work right up until his death at the age of 88, at which time he was buried in Jerusalem's Har Hamenuchot Cemetery in the section for the Holy City's "notable citizens."

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