Atara Grenadir


Conscious Community

The “conscious community” was an assembly of people united by their teacher Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira with the common goal of continuously generating positive thoughts. The goal for this alliance was to see beyond the mundane world and allow their spiritual sensibilities to guide them. I felt profoundly connected to this dream and chose to spread his ideals through visual imagery.

Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira was a revered Chassidic rabbi who devoted his last years uplifting the broken spirits of the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto. Fortunately, he had the foresight to bury his manuscripts shortly before the Ghetto’s demise. This spiritual treasure was found after the war among the ruins. It was his hope that others would learn from the holy legacy he left behind. I consider myself privileged to count myself as one of his grateful students.

Many of the paintings have white reflective areas in the lower portion of the canvases. This symbolizes the brilliant light emanating from the members of the community, points of truth that sear through the darkness - a primary teaching of Rabbi Shapira.

The soft-edge color washes and hard-edge bands push and pull throughout the surface of the canvas, reflecting the inner conflict between the emotions and the intellect, generating organic vitality. The spacing and color interactions evoke a higher purpose, a movement towards transcendence.

I have been influenced by the paintings of Helen Frankenthaler and Agnes Martin and Barnett Newman.

The aesthetic content of these paintings - the color, shapes and textures, when internalized by the viewer, can server as an inspiration to seek a higher consciousness. It is my hope that this process prompts an abundance of positive thought, expression and action, breaking through all perceived personal limitations.