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Party of the year
The outfits were glitzy and the red carpet was out at the Feb. 13 opening party for “The World Stage: Israel,” an exhibit by African American painter Kehinde Wiley at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco.
Attendees called it the “event of the year” and “incredible,” and Gravity Goldberg, the museum’s public program manager, couldn’t help but agree.
“Everyone I’ve spoken to said it was the best party ever at the museum.”
Wiley’s huge paintings of Israeli men of color dazzled the attendees. DJ Alarm, an Israeli currently hanging out stateside, spun reggae in one room, then teamed with rapper Kalkidan Mashasha for a blazin’ set. The two “made magic,” Golberg said. Even patron of the arts Dorothy Saxe was seen bobbing her head to the beat.
Mashasha, the subject of several of Wiley’s portraits, is an Ethiopian Israeli hip-hop artist who flew in from Israel for the event.
Other attendees included Dana Corvin and Harris Weinberg, Susan Swig, Adam Swig, Sean Taube, Anita Friedman and Barbara Oshman.
Rabbi David Nesenoff, the filmmaker-blogger whose 2010 video interview with longtime White House press corps member Helen Thomas went viral because of her provocative anti-Semitic remarks, and former Sen. Russ Feingold of Wisconsin both addressed local congregations recently. Nesenoff had his audience spellbound and roaring in laughter, says Rabbi Raleigh Resnick of Chabad of the Tri-Valley. Nesenoff gave a play-by-play recap of the incident that subsequently ended Thomas’ career.
At Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, Feingold addressed an overflow crowd of nearly 500 about a Supreme Court case that allows corporations to be viewed as individuals. “The audience questions showed a passionate interest in having transparent elections and getting excessive money out of politics,” reported Diane Rolfe, chair of Pursue Justice, the civic engagement committee of the congregation’s Tzedek (Justice) Council. Rabbi Jonathan Prosnit chaired the event. Feingold served in the Senate from 1993 to 2011.
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