by Barbara Gingold

Looking Up — New Art on the Hospital’s Ceiling

They were born almost the same week, Nehama Grenimann and Timora Avitzur. Friends from the time they were babies. Daughters of English-speaking parents who belong to Kehilat Yedidya, Jerusalem’s first left-liberal Orthodox congregation. They grew up together in a close-knit community that was intellectually, politically and socially involved. At the age of four or five, they produced their first book: Timora’s text, Nehama’s illustrations. In high school — both of them smart, sensitive, talented students — they compared notes and dreams. But Timora died at 18, after six grueling years of hospital treatments for leukemia. She left behind a sheaf of poems and a grieving community. Nehama went on to serve in the Israeli army, then to study art in Florence. Her experiences with Timora still very fresh, she wrote her senior thesis on “Hospitals, Giving, and the Social Role of Art.”

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