The Ten Plagues

Valerie Brown. 2021. Narrative Collage. [Collage]

Artist Statement: I've been experimenting with narrative collage making over the last year or so. The experience of sifting through found images to create a story presents unique challenges and requires some intepretive storytelling. A few midrashic intepretations played in to my use of imagery. First, for the plague of frogs, we are told that the frogs were everywhere, even amongst the Egyptian's flour. I included the vessel images for this purpose. Another midrash tells us that the plague of darkness was so complete as to be paralyzing for the Egyptians, so placing the image of the crowd overlaid on an image of space felt apt. I considered a more organized approach with more separate sections for each of the plagues, however, in the end I decided I wanted to capture the overwhelming experience of the plagues. It must have been a constant psychological struggle for the Egyptians to be unaware of what might come next.

Artist Bio: Valerie Brown is a student at Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. When she takes a break from studying Torah and Jewish education, she can be found mining free libraries all over Jerusalem for collage materials. Valerie has been creating in various mediums from a young age, including ceramics, jewelry, and textiles. Since the beginning of COVID lockdowns, she has become a proficient crocheter and has plans to become a candle maker next. 

haggadah Section: -- Ten Plagues