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Israelis You Should Know: Mordecai Ardon

Stained glass by Mordecai Ardon in Jerusalem's Jewish National and University Library (Photo: wikicommons/יעל י)

Lived: July 13, 1896 - June 18, 1992

Known for: Painter, stained-glass maker, and father of regional approach to Israeli art

Why you should know him: Born Max Bronstein in Galicia, in what is now Poland, Mordecai Ardon changed his name upon making aliyah (immigrating to Jerusalem) in 1933.

Ardon's artwork used a combination of images from the Bible, from Jewish tradition, and from reality. By doing so, he tied the present to the ancient history and mystery of the Holy Land. Subjects which Ardon portrayed include Jerusalem's Old City and the Holocaust. Among his most famous creations are the stained-glass windows still displayed at the Jewish National and University Library in Jerusalem.

As a teacher at Bezalel, the national school of art, Ardon passed on this sense of importance of Israel - both its past and present - to generations of artists who followed him.

Among the many prizes and honors given to this important Israeli artist was the Israel Prize in 1963.

Tags: Life in Israel

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