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my life into art

My Life Into Art: An Autobiography

FORWARD By Judith Weinshall Liberman

I have been planning to write my memoirs for a number of years. At the time of this writing, I am seventy-eight years old. I have been tempted to blame the procrastination on the fact that, until very recently, I was busy with the exhibition of my artworks in various museums and other public institutions, and was occupied with writing didactic materials to be used in conjunction with these exhibitions.

Perhaps the true reason for the delay was that during these years, whenever I looked back upon the path my life had taken, there were several competing themes that suggested themselves to me, and I found it impossible to choose one that I would focus on in writing my story.

In this quandary, I finally decided not to make a choice. Rather, I resolved that I would simply begin writing, and let the story of my life find its own theme in the course of my writing, the way the artworks I created for four decades evolved without detailed, conscious planning. I sat down to write not knowing where I would begin or end. I had no outline or predetermined story line. I let my life tell its own story as it came to me in the process of writing.

I was surprised by the story that emerged in this writing. Its theme had not occurred to me in my conscious quest for the meaning of my life. After I completed my memoirs, however, and had a chance to set them aside for a while and then read them from beginning to end, the story they told felt not only true but inevitable. This autobiography begins at a critical point in my life, when, in 1947, after completing high school, I left Israel (then Palestine) and came to America to study in college. It ends with my return - albeit temporary - to Israel in 1992 to exhibit my artworks in solo exhibitions in two museums in my native land. These memoirs trace my personal evolution in the intervening forty-five years and, in so doing, offer insight into the close relationship between my life and my art.

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