There’s a special place that still applies traditional crafting skills to produce extraordinary artworks on religious themes. It’s called ‘Artists at Lavi’.
Have you even wanted to bring to life an idea that expresses your ideal religious mural? Is there a special place in your community hall where a central artwork could really stand out?
Even though we live in a mass-produced and increasingly standardized world, there are still pockets of unique talent committed to working in the ‘old ways’ that leave room for individual expression.
Fine artworks have always enhanced places of worship. Lavi Furniture Industries has skilled artisans who can lend their skills to creating many unique pieces.
The synagogue is the place where the material and the spiritual are intertwined, where the community feels sanctified and absorbs the atmosphere. It’s here that fine artworks are especially uplifting.
If you’re in the process of building or renovating your synagogue, consider some of the artistic ways that can give it a more stylized appearance. Some ideas have been used for many years in synagogues while others are newcomers.
Wood carvings or sculpting have always been popular in synagogues. Some carvings are deep while others are delicate. Decisions about style and technique are made according to the design requirements of the client (or his/her architect) and the characteristics of the synagogue.
At Lavi Furniture Industries the hand carver is a highly valued artisan. CNC machines can only take a design so far and then the personal skills must step in. Designs can range from traditional adornments such as frills or vines to modern carvings of the holy sites, such as the Western Wall and the Cave of the Patriarchs.
Once the carving is completed, it goes through a sanding process and is then coated with natural oil or wax for a long-lasting shine.
Embossing is the art of curling, bending and shaping metal surfaces as individual artworks or as elements integrated with furniture, walls or doors. These techniques were already used in antiquity. It is said that the doors of the Temple were adorned with embossed metal – and such decoration is still prevalent in many synagogues and batei midrash today.
The popular and traditional metals used are copper, brass and silver. Today embossed metal artworks decorate walls, bamot, teivot, aronot kodesh and more. Even though numerous ‘generic’ designs are available, the craftsmen at Lavi Furniture Industries make sure that all their creations are originals and shaped by hand.
The laser is a modern industrial tool used to cut materials in production lines, especially flat sheets. The laser beam cuts various types of plastics, wood, veneer, stone and even metals.
The versatility and precision of laser cutting make it ideal for projects such as decorative partitions.
Cutting is guided by a regular graphic file. The sketch can be taken from an existing catalog of designs – or customized. In this case, Lavi’s artists will draw a sketch for the customer, which entered into a computer program and converted into a digital file. Cutting is then done accordingly.
At the end of the cutting process, the latticed board reaches the finisher. The finish can be gilded or silvered and then the grille can be painted with a durable finish in any desired shade. Laser cutting is very suitable for partitions, since work can be done on flat surfaces.
Many synagogues use glass in a decorative way for windows, memorial boards and lighting fixtures. Creative use of glass delivers beautiful and fascinating combinations of light and color, which greatly enhance the synagogue’s interior design and special atmosphere.
Production techniques have come a long way since stained glass. A specialized digital printer can impose pictures and drawings on glass. In the ‘scorched glass’ technique, manual art combines with computers. Sand is sprayed at high pressure and under computer control deep into the glass, and then the glass is painted by hand.
Another new technique is ‘fused glass’, reminiscent of traditional stained glass. Here glass dust or fragments are melted to create new glass that has a 3-D look composed of several layers.
Embracing the unusual
The range of possibilities means that unusual art is part of the routine at Lavi Furniture Industries – such as making special bronze metal castings. Blending advanced production technologies with the rich know-how of our skilled artists gives us the rare capability to turn every synagogue into a true delight.