Visitors to Israel may wish to know that, situated near the imposing Baha'i Temple in Haifa, is a small green and bronze jewel of a place, Mitzpor Shalom, the Peace Park, a garden in which 29 works are installed, some of the life-size and life like sculptures created by Ursula Malbin in over sixty of her eighty two years of existence,
creating quietly, diligently, without publicity or the support of any art gallery, or affluent sponsors of artworks. Ursula Malbin's sculptures are representing children, young men, women and animals, marked by excellent craftsmanship, imbued with a serene buoyancy and set off by an occasional touch of humor.
Ursula Malbin was a member of a Zionist youth group in pre-war Berlin. Providentially leaving Germany a few days before World War II broke out, she found herself in Switzerland. She stayed there during the war years, married and commenced her sculpture work. In 1966 while visiting Israel, Ursula Malbin bought an old house in Ein-Hod, the artist village 20 k.m. South of Haifa. From this time on she divides her creative life between Ein-Hod and the village of Troinex, near Geneva in Switzerland. In the little garden of her Ein-Hod house she displayed some of her bronze sculptures. Visitors and messages of unsolicited acclaim poured in.
She did not forget the members of her youth group from Berlin who had helped to built Israel meanwhile, and wanted to compensate not having partaken in this. She realized that the best service could be performed by her by bestowing to the people of Israel her life's works in bronze. In cooperation with Haifa Municipality, Mizpor Shalom came into existence in 1978. Gently landscaped on a hillside, the sculpture garden commands a panoramic view of the great harbor, and beyond it the Mediterranean Sea.
Over the years, the gentle majesty of the sculptures, artfully installed to reflect and harmonize with the greenery, have provided solace and tranquility to numberless visitors, young and old, who have sought momentary escape from the cares of the world. Many are those who return, time and time again, to relax and contemplate and renew themselves in the sylvan surrounding of Mizpor Shalom. If you have not already done so, do so on your next trip to Haifa. You will be rewarded with some of the intangible pleasures of life and art. We immensely believe you will return again and again.
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