Portrait of The Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks
 
Nicola Green's portrait of Rabbi Sacks
"Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks" 2013, Five colour silkscreen print with water-based and metallic ink on cotton paper 
91 cm x 87 cm, edition of 10.
  
 
The portrait of Lord Jonathan Sacks is a permanent gift donated by Laura and Barry Townsley to the collection of The Jewish Museum in London, and has been on public display since Wednesday 30th of October 2013. 

Nicola was commissioned to make a portrait of The Chief Rabbi after 22 years in office, by members of the Biritish Jewry (Barry Townsley, David Rubin, Lord Kalms, David Buchler and others). Attending numerous events with him over the last few years has given Nicola a deep insight into his work. During this time she made dozens of drawings and has taken hundreds of photographs as he travelled around the UK, to Israel and to the US.

At the end of June 2013, a dinner was held in tribute to Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks to celebrate his 22 years of leadership. Nicola is pictured, below right, viewing her work with Lord Sacks and the Guest of Honour, HRH the Prince of Wales (photo by John Rifkin).

 

Many words have been and will be written about the Chief Rabbi – but an image can also speak volumes. On returning to her studio to make the portrait, Nicola worked to distil her multiple experiences and images into one portrait.

She describes her process: “Witnessing the Chief Rabbi in action across the world has been an extraordinary and privileged experience. His intellectual and spiritual contribution to the UK and global community is profound - I wanted to capture the depth of that legacy. The final portrait was made using a simple, contemplative shot taken in the Galil, on a trip to Israel in February 2013. Within the composition, colour, layout and technique I have tried to absorb the content and narrative of many of the photos you can see in this book. I have mixed iridescent powder and metallic electric blue into the paint to reflect the light. He might be praying, or reading, or just pausing to capture a thought before sharing it – within that ambiguity lie some of the most essential aspects I’ve witnessed in the Chief Rabbi as a public and private figure: his thoughtfulness, spirituality, humility and grace.”
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