Keren Souza-Kohn

For individuals who are searching for an expressive art experience that combines a deep spirituality with a flowing grace and a vibrant "joie de vivre," the new permanent exhibit by well-known artist Keren Souza-Kohn fulfills all expectations.

Background

Souza-Kohn incorporates her life journey into her paintings in which she conveys her evolving relationships with her family, her community and her heritage. Souza-Kohn was born into a family of artists. Her mother was an actress and her father was Francis Newton Souza, a founding member of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group and an influential leader in modern Indian art. Souza-Kohn grew up in a non-religiously-affiliated home but her mother's Jewish roots were to play a great role in Souza-Kohn's development as an artist as well as in her personal life.

Bohemian

Souza-Kohn grew up in a bohemian atmosphere which was inundated with the art world. She studied art but her "progressive" art institute didn't provide the kind of technical instruction that many artists find vital and Souza-Kohn was left to find her own way in gaining her individual artistic perspective.

As Keren's personal style matured and expanded she developed her own specific approaches which involved imbuing her works with richness and meanings.

Spiritual Explorations

At the same time that Souza-Kohn's artistic style was expanding her personal life was changing as well. Souza-Kohn began to explore her Jewish roots about which she had previously known very little. When her eldest son was born she felt a vision that showed him as a new Jewish soul whose link to his chain of ancestors was unbroken.

At that time, Souza-Kohn was not yet religiously observant but she named her son "Solomon" as an affirmation of his Jewish legacy. Throughout the past 20 years Souza-Kohn has been drawing closer to her Jewish roots through Hassidic teachings which strongly influence her artwork.

Keren's early works resembled her father's artistic style with hard edges and strong colors. Her new approach involves a more mystical style. She is fascinated by the Hebrew letters, with their numerical connocations and mystical meanings. She is also influenced by the teaching of the Chabad Hassidic movement which combines the practicality of day-to-day living -- including outreach to unaffiliated Jews -- with an intensely spiritual system of belief. Currently, her works focus on G-d's goodness, both hidden and revealed, as it has affected her own personal journey.

Permanent Exhibition

Keren's new permanent exhibition in the Old Jewish Quarter of Safed is, in her words, her "opportunity to unwind" and put to canvas her expressions of spirituality and faith.  Her gallery is located on Bar Yochai Street in Tzfat's Old Jewish Quarter, near the Old City's Central Square.

She can be contacted at 077-201-2964 or [email protected]

Keren Souza Kohn


Zefat Zimmers