Photography Exhibition


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Image Gallery


Photographer Leonid Padrul

Producer and Curator Ellina Kwitkovsky



All 40 photographs of  Leonid Padrul displayed in the exhibition "The shadow of Jerusalem" are made without computer assistance. Each one is not just unique it contains the whole Biblical story with all its conflicts, passions and the endless search for eternal values.

The holy magic light of Jerusalem is shown as the center of the worlds creation, contradicting the darkness which symbolizes universal evil.  This is a blessed light that hopefully will bring forth peace and goodness. The exhibition's title, "the Shadow of Jerusalem", itself borrowed from the Kabbala, recalls the passage from the Book of Isaiah: " And nations shall walk at thy light, and kings at the brightness of thy rising " (Isaiah, LX:3).








Texts which they accompany the exhibition





In the Bible Jerusalem is always associated with light. The Prophet Isaiah says: The Gentiles shall come to Thy light, and kings to the brightness of Thy rising.

(Isaiah LX, 3.) Heavenly Jerusalem is connected with such motives as the Messiahs advent, the restoration of Solomons Temple and clearing of the Golden Gate.

Israelis say to go up to Jerusalem, which means not only the citys mountain location but also ascension as a spiritual journey.







The Wailing or Western Wall is part of the external wall of the Second Jerusalem Temple on the Temple Mount, reconstructed by Tsar Herod.

Emperor Titus destroyed the Temple while capturing Jerusalem in 70 A.D. but the Western Wall was spared.

The Western Wall is the most sacred place for Jews: religious Jews of the whole world pray turning towards Israel, Jews in Israel pray towards Jerusalem, and Jews in Jerusalem pray towards the Western Wall.

Near the Western Wall one can find praying people at any time. Some elite units of Israel Defense Force take their oath in front of the Western Wall.







The Jerusalem Church of the Holy Sepulcher (or The Church of the Resurrection) was erected in the place where, according to the Bible, Jesus Christ was crucified, buried and then resurrected. The first church of the Holy Resurrection was laid by St. Tsarina Elena and completed before 335 A.D. Later the church was many times destroyed, restored, damaged from fires, then reconstructed anew and extended. In 1810 (after the fire of 1808) it was built up again and preserved until today.

The Church is divided between six Christian faiths: Greek Orthodox, Catholic, Armenian, Coptic, Syrian and Ethiopian, each having side-chapels and hours for pray.







On the east slopes of the Judean mountains, north of Jericho, a Greek orthodox monastery Quarantal or the Monastery of the Temptation, and the Monastery of St. George of Koziba are located. In national legends the Judean desert is considered a dwelling of demons. Lifeless mountains of the Judean desert resemble huge tombs. To this place Christ went for a meeting with the devil tempter.

The name Quarantal descends from crusaders. Quarantal means "forty." The mountain on which the Savior fasted forty days being tempted by Satan, refers to as the Mountain of the Temptation. During Jesus fast He was approached by Devil who offered Him all earth's kingdoms.

The first church on the Mountain of the Temptation was erected in the 4th century. Later here appeared a cave monastery. Its walls are partially cut into the rock, and partially protrude over it.

In the place where Christ prayed, the Church of the Annunciation of Our Lady was built, or rather, carved in.







On the northwestern coast of the Dead Sea are found the famous Qumran caves.  The Dead Sea Scrolls, Judaic religious texts written between the 2nd century B.C. and 68 A.D. were found here after 1947. Most likely, these documents were hidden in caves near Qumran by several waves of refugees who were leaving Jerusalem to escape the Romans.

According to a theory adopted in the 1950s 1960s, there was in Qumran a "monastery" of the religious community of Essenes, opponents of "official" Judaism. Essenes, who practiced communal life, asceticism and often celibacy, are considered predecessors of Christianity.

The scrolls representing the world cultural property are stored in The Shrine of the Book at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.







The Hebrew word metzuda means fortress or citadel. Located in the Judean Desert, southeast of Jerusalem, the fortress towers 450 meters above sea level. From the air the fortress resembles a ship thrown down into the sands of the desert. Under Herod the Great, a palace complex surrounded by sturdy walls with battle towers was constructed here. Josephus Flavius in The Wars of the Jews named Masada the strongest of all fortresses.

During the Judean war in 70 A.D., after the capture of Jerusalem by the Roman legions and destruction of the Temple, Masada remained the last stronghold of the insurgents and a refuge for 970 Jerusalem inhabitants. After a long siege the defenders of the fortress realized that they were doomed and committed suicide, rather than surrender to the Romans. Masada is a symbol of Jewish heroism. Masada is included in the UNESCO World Heritage list.







In Kabbala writings the area of the Dead Sea is named The Shadow of Jerusalem.

Historically, its coast accommodated Sodom and Gomorrah, the renowned Biblical cities which have become universal symbols of evil, vice, moral decline and divine punishment.







The River Jordan is considered one of the most sacred rivers in the world. It originates at the foot of mountain Hermon, proceeds through the Sea of Galilee and flows into the Dead Sea. Jordan is repeatedly mentioned in the Bible as a place of various events, including miraculous. According to the Old Testament, Jesus Navin led the Jewish people with the Ark of the Covenant on dry land over the Jordan when its waters miraculously parted  (Joshua, 3:15-17), after the forty-year wandering of the Jews in the desert. Later, according to the Gospel, Jesus Christ was baptized in the Jordans waters.







A rock about 30 meters high consisting basically from crystal salt is located at the southwest extremity of the Dead Sea. There, in concordance with the Biblical tradition, stood the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah perhaps the best-known Biblical cities which have become a universal symbol of perversity and divine punishment. According to the Book of Genesis, after Abraham had failed to find at least ten righteous persons in Sodom, G-d rained down sulfur and fire on the cities of the plain.

The mountain resembles a human figure. The Biblical tradition identifies it with Lots wife. Having disobeyed G-ds order she looked back at perishing Sodom and was turned to a salt pillar.






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The Shadow of Jerusalem      Photography Exhibition by Leonid Padrul      Producer and Curator Ellina Kwitkovsky


















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