Saturday, January 30, 2010

Laura Joy Fendel- Fabric Sculptor


Laura Joy Fendel is a co-leader of ORA Northwest Jewish Artists. A retired school teacher and interior designer, Laura now spends much of her time designing functional and decorative sculptures made from quilted fabrics.

Beautiful wedding canopies, trapunto tryptychs, fabric mosaics and functional vases are a few of her most popular art works.

Laura is coordinating the Elements Art Show for ORA at Elements Gallery (NW 19th & Vaughn) which opens on First Thursday , March 4th 5:30-9pm. The show will run daily through Sunday March 12th.
The Elements Show is part of Jewish Arts Month (JAM).

To see a sampling of Laura Joy's work go to:

For information about JAM go to:

Thursday, January 28, 2010


ORA: Northwest Jewish Artists has been a presence in Portland Oregon for the past 4 years.
Until recently, it was an all-women's group. Recently they have added men!

ORA is a driving force behind JAM (Jewish Arts Month). ORA means light in Hebrew. They will present their interpretations of light at a unique art exhibit at Elements Gallery and Hot Shop in NW 19th and Vaughn in the newly designated NoLo District (north of Lovejoy.) the show will open with a First Thursday celebration on March 4th and close at 4pm on Sunday, March 14th. They will also have a small exhibit in the MJCC lobby from March 7-12.

Over the span of the next few weeks, this blog will feature each of the ORA artists, but if you really want to get to know this group of fine Jewish artists, come to their exhibits. You'll be glad you did!
for more information about ORA go to:

for information about these and other JAM events go to:

Monday, January 25, 2010

Renate Dollinger- 86 and going strong!!!!!

See full size image

Renate will be a featured artist in the COHO theater lobby during when Triangle productions directs the one woman play ROSE, which opens April 1.
Renate has recently completed 20 new oil paintings for JAM and Portland is so lucky to have her work return to us. Renate lived in Salem for a few years but now lives in Washington. Her shtetl paintings are well loved and have a place in the homes of many collectors!

Renate Dollinger was born Rose Renate Sandberger in Breig, a mountain village in Silesia, Germany. (1924) She grew up there and in Breslau, Fleeing to England on the Kinder-Transport. (1939)  More of her life's history will appear later when we get closer to April.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Here's our link to the Jewish Arts Month Calendar:

We'll explain each event as the date approaches.
Keep checking!

JOANNE GREENBERG: novelist and storyteller


A lot of us first met Joanne Greenberg in high school when we read I Never Promised You a Rose Garden. Some of us read it more than once!
Joanne Greenberg is a remarkable novelist.....and STORY TELLER! In a recent phone conversation we discussed her upcoming visit to Portland. Much to our delight, Joanne agreed to add JAM to her speaking agenda. She'll be doing readings at Reed College and the U of O.

On February 28th, Joanne will take to the stage at the Oregon Jewish Museum where she will delight an intimate audience of 50 adults with stories intended for the mature crowd. These aren't stories intended for young ears....This is a remarkable opportunity. Come join us for a great evening! JEWISH ARTS don't want to miss it!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Poet scheduled to read~

Francis Payne Adler will be reading poetry at our PRE-JAM SLAM February 24th @ 7pm at the MJCC.
Fran is an activist poet, professor, and all around mensch. How lucky Portland is that she decided to move here!
Come to our event, hear her words, become inspired and of course, buy a copy of one of her books
Fire and Ink, The Matriot, and Raising the Tents.
..............................remember: Admission is free!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Lots of Words...but worth reading!

We crammed ourselves into a small office space this morning to continue our planning for Jewish Arts Month (JAM.) The MJCC was hopping busy! The conference room was full, an event was going on in the ballroom and I counted 3 separate meetings going on in the cafe. How cool that our "J" is so vibrant and busy!

In the coming weeks there will be lots of talk about the exciting events we have  planned, but first, let's acknowledge all of the people who are working hard to make this event happen. We'll have to bring a camera to the next meeting to capture all the "shayna punims" of the team.

The grant writing talents of Helen Gundlach earned our grant from the Oregon Arts Commission! In addition to her duties as director of development for both the MJCC and Portland Jewish Academy, she found the time to cultivate a beautiful grant. Thanks Helen!!!

Lisa Horowitz doesn't sit on the planning team, but as CEO of The Mittleman Jewish Community Center and Portland Jewish Academy has offered incredible support. Our team will work hard to repay your confidence in us.

Another MJCC staffer, Jordana Levenick has been busy  creating a beautiful program guide, reserving rooms, and consulting on all marketing efforts.

Barbara Steinfeld is the Vice President of Travel Portland. She has helped design our grant evaluation tool and has facilitated a number of important contacts. She is also our Twitter Maven!

Esther Liberman faithfully takes notes, maintains our events calendar and is working on the design of our upcoming webpage with the  graphic arts staff at the "J". She's member of ORA: Northwest Jewish Artists, creating  beautiful works of bead art.

Cantor Ida Rae Cahana is a talented musical artist and adjunct clergy member at Temple Beth Israel. She is also a member of the MJCC board and is working closely with Ed Kraus, whose voice is well known to fans of KBOO's The Yiddish Hour. Together they are putting together several musical programs that will feature local and internationally know performers.

Founder and director of the Portland jewish Theater Collaborative, Sacha Reich brings theatrical vision to our team. KinderTransport will be a featured part of JAM coming to A.R.T. in March.

Priscilla Kostiner brings years of experience to our work. Long time supporter of Jewish cultural arts, religious lay leader and MJCC board member, Priscilla is leading our fundraising efforts.

 Our newest team member is Abby Myers. Under her leadership our kick-off party will involve city leaders as well as numerous talented artists and performers. Refreshments and free admission will welcome our guests.

Eddy Shuldman is a local artist, member of ORA and one of the originators of JAM. She is coordinating venues to feature local 2-D and 3-D artists .

The PROPER logo

With a little help from the graphics dept. at the MJCC, we can now proudly boast both the OAC and NEA logos.
Because of them....JAM is up and running in Portland Oregon.
Somehow, just saying "Thank you" doesn't seem like enough!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Welcome to our Blog!

Jewish Arts Month begins February 24th with a kick-off party at the MJCC.
We're calling it : The Pre-Jam Slam!
Everyone is welcome and it's free.
Stay tuned because we have a lot of info to share as our plans evolve.

What is JAM?'s about 11 weeks of theater, music, art, poetry....and probably a few things we haven't thought of yet!

We are thrilled to be the recipients of a generous grant from the Oregon Arts Commission and hope that some generous art lovers out there would consider making a donation of any size to help us stage these amazing events. TAX DEDUCTIBLE donations can be made in care of the Mittleman Jewish Community Center (MJCC) 6651 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland Oregon...Just be sure to say that the money needs to be earmarked for JAM!

Computer challenges have prevented me from also posting the OAC logo....but I promise to include it in our next post.....which should happen with great regularity!