New Haggadah illustrates Jewish diversity

As Passover approaches, renowned photographer Zion Ozeri has produced a new version of the Haggadah, the story of the Biblical Exodus from Egypt, to grace every Seder table.

The Haggadah in Hebrew and English translation is called Pictures tell: a Passover Haggadah. It is illustrated with Ozeri’s photographs,  taken during his travels across the world.

It’s an old story, told in a novel way. The photographs are of Jews in India, Argentina, Ukraine, Israel and New York, among other places.  What do these Jews have in common? They may speak different languages  but they are all members of the Jewish people united across time and space by an unbreakable bond of custom, culture, tradition and memory.

Award-winning Ozeri has made it his mission to seek out far-flung Jewish communities, some of whom have since disappeared, such as the ancient community of Yemen.

“All pictures relate to the text on the page,” says Ozeri. who was born into a Yemenite family in  Israel and now lives in the US. ” It can easily trigger a conversation around the table. It’s also important for me to show the diversity and mosaic of the Jewish people, dispelling the perception, that all Jews are white European, privileged.  There are lots of insights from renown rabbis and scholars of different backgrounds, including one from the late rabbi Jonathan Sacks z”l.”

The text of the Haggadah is interspersed with these insights. There are also questions to stimulate the curiosity of children.

Zion Ozeri’s work has appeared in prestige national publications and has been exhibited in museums and galleries across the world. He has also published The Jewish World Family Haggadah (Simon and Shuster) and a coffee table book, The Jews of Yemen: the last generation (Keter).

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