As the Land of the Bible, most early Israeli was centered around religious themes, specifically Jewish and Christian perspectives. Many early settlements worked at gold smithing, silver smithing, and embroidery. Having evolved drastically over the last two centuries, today’s art is widely influenced by contemporary trends, as well as the international art community. Located throughout museums, galleries, and archaeological sites, the art truly showcases the colorful culture of the Holy Land.
Home to over 70 distinct museums, we believe there are three museums in Israel that outshine the rest. The Israel Museum, founded in 1965 and located in Jerusalem, is known today as the Land’s national museum. Housing the Dead Sea Scrolls and a nail attesting to the practice of crucifixion in Jesus’ time, among many other artifacts, the museum highlights historical works unlike anywhere else in Israel. The Tel Aviv Museum of Art, established in 1932, houses a collection of classical and contemporary art. The museum is also home to quite the visually-appealing sculptural garden, as well as housing paintings by Pablo Picasso. Designed by Israeli architect Ron Arad, the Design Museum Holon is the first museum in the Holy Land to strictly be dedicated to design. The primary goal of the museum is to inspire and educated the public’s ideas towards design and how it influences the world around us. With so many options to choose from, you really can’t go wrong!
If history and archaeology inspire you as much as art, visiting the following sites should be at the top of your list. These are all home to numerous works from the ancient past. The Zippori National Park, located west of Nazareth, is home to a 5th-century synagogue, mosaics from the Byzantine era, as well as the mysterious “Mona Lisa of the Galilee.” Caesarea is home to the impressive “Bird Mosaic” from a 6th century AD palace. Spanning the courtyard and more, these mosaics decorated the entirety of the floor. Located in Jerusalem, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher is home to not only stunning Christian mosaics, but also beautifully appealing architecture as well.
Ein Hod Artists Village
Situated at the foot of Mount Carmel, excavations have indicated human settlement in the area dates back over 150,000 years. Originally being the Arab village of Ein Hawd, artist Marcel Janco kept the village from being demolished by convincing the government to allow him to build an artists’ colony after the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Today, Ein Hod has a population of 590, being home to many sculptors, painters, and musicians who keep their studios and galleries open to the general public. Having suffered an immense amount of damage after the 2010 Carmel forest fire, efforts have been made to preserve what is left of the older buildings, even having some transformed into restaurants and bars.
Nahalat Binyamin Arts And Crafts Fair
Every Tuesday and Friday in the heart of Tel Aviv, the Nachalat Binyamin Market houses a massive arts and crafts fair, bringing in more than 200 artists to showcase and sell their art. Boasting a wide variety of handmade, original works, the fair has created a sense of community between artists who see each other often to share techniques and ideas, always adapting and refining their works. Having to be approved by a committee with what they’re selling, you are guaranteed a quality piece of work every time!
With such a diverse history and culture, the art of Israel is colorful, yet elegant in every sense of the words. From unique designs to vibrant techniques, the art is nothing short of remarkable. Be sure to take in everything the art world has to offer during your visit to the Holy Land!