Jaume Plensa is acclaimed worldwide for his artworks and monumental public sculptures, in a diverse practice that includes stage design for operas and theaters.
“…When HaShem created the world, He didn’t create it as a vast expanse of existence all at once. Rather, He created a single point, and from there, He drew out the entire universe… There was a single point of contact between the world above and this world… it’s a rock that sits on top of a small hill… the site where connecting Heaven and Earth…”
(From Seasons of the Moon by Rabbi Yaakov Asher Sinclair)
EVEN SHITIA was inspired by this passage. Jaume Plensa’s art is famous for having a unique sense of space created by using multiple materials, including iron, glass, stone, bronze, alabaster, and stainless steel in combination with text carved, cut or welded on. However, the artwork he has produced here is shaped like a round stone. In the middle are inscribed the words “EVEN SHETIA” meaning “foundation stone, rock of the origin of the world” in Hebrew.
It is only at night that EVEN SHITIA reveals its real nature. The center of the rock begins to beam a ray of light straight towards the night sky after sunset, creating a solemn scene suggesting the birth of an unknown world. It also looks as if something is about to materialize out of the hard art piece. Thus nighttime in Towada is wreathed in mystery: imagine it was here that the world began, and this familiar landscape suddenly starts to look a lot less familiar.
Photo: Oyamada Kuniya
Born 1955, and currently based, in Barcelona, Spain. Plensa studied at Llotja School of Art and Design and Sant Jordi School of Fine Arts (Barcelona). He has taught at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris (France) and as a guest professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (US). His monumental sculptures are sited in public spaces worldwide. Recent works include Behind the Walls, 2018 in historic Rockefeller Center (New York City, US, 2019) and Museo Nacional de Arte (Mexico City, Mexico, 2019-20), Julia, 2018 (Madrid, Spain, 2018-20) and Voices, 2019 (New York City, permanent installation).