the road to Haifa lies Ein Hod, an artists' village on a hill,
at the foot of Mount Carmel overlooking the Mediterranean coast,
the town of Atlit, and an ancient 12th century crusader fortress.
After the War of Independence the area was abandoned and left
in ruin. In the fifties, a group of artists led by the acclaimed
Dada artist Marcel Janco decided that Ein Hod would be a place
where they could work, build studios and workshops, and form a
creative environment for art and art education. The founders'
dream ran into the harsh reality of those days.
perseverance and vision gradually transformed Ein Hod into the
only artists' village in Israel, one of the few in the world,
where artists live and create in every artistic media from the
visual arts, to theater, music and literature.
The attitude, structure and even the population of the village
has changed with the passing of the years, but its basic principles
have been guarded with admirable zeal. The diversity of its
inhabitants and the clear difference between the original founders
and the new generation create an unusual yet fascinating social
fabric. Young and old try to follow the general principles of
reciprocity and form a culture based on sharing.
Communal life is managed by a General Council - the ruling body
- and by a biyearly elected administrative committee. The village
has a wide range of cultural resources. The Ein Hod Art Gallery,
the Janco-Dada Museum and the Artists' House, artists' studios
and galleries are supplemented by a variety of exhibitions and
artistic activity throughout the village. The Gertrude Krause
House sponsors biweekly chamber music concerts and guest lectures.
During the summer months performances of popular music and light
entertainment take place in the Roman style outdoor amphitheater.
To complete the setting, restaurants and coffee houses in the
center of the village serve as places for social gathering and
merriment. The Ein Hod Art Gallery exhibits artwork of all the
member artists living in the village who have been approved
by the local jury.
Painting and sculpture, ranging from contemporary to early Israeli
artists, share space with the various craft media. Works on
paper, photography, ceramics, gold and silver jewelry, glass
and metal design objects make the gallery one of the largest
collections of Israeli art in the country. One can find works
by the first generation (works of historical value) hanging
alongside young contemporary artists, only recently accepted
into the village. Ein Hod is characterized by the special setting
of a village sitting on a hillside, surrounded by olive groves,
with a view of the Mediterranean Sea, where baroque sunsets
end each day. Despite lack of funds and development resources,
the village has managed to preserve its original, historic nature
and the romantic and simple charm of Israel in its first years
of independence. Very few places in Israel have managed to retain
the authentic quality of the Mediterranean. One can still discern
in the old structures the many textures and architectural forms
of earlier occupants -- from the Christian Crusades to the Turkish
Empire. The roads and byways, a mixture of ancient and modern,
all add to a very special atmosphere. Yet perhaps it is the
landscape, the vegetation and the view that make this place
so unique and exciting -- natural Mediterranean gardens of olive,
pomegranate almond and carob trees, grape vines and figs. Ein
Hod has remained a nature reserve, preserving the biblical flora
of ancient Israel -- a perfect environment for the creative
Early days of Ein Hod
1977 The Oliv Press. Photo by Yaacov Shorer
The founders of Ein Hod Artists' Village:
Marcel Janco, Iche Mambush & Aviva Margalit, Moshe Mokady, Michael Kuhn, Gershon Davidovitz, Zila Neiman, Elza Sherf & Gertrud Kraus, Johannan Simon & Finny Leitersdorf, Jean David, Hans & Mutz Peter, Shoshana & Dov Portnov, Kossi Mendle, Meir Dahan, Moshe Barak, Shulamit & Amos Tal, Zvi Friedland, Norman & Margaret Lewis, Zipora & Alex Rubens, Genia Berger & Yehuda Gabay, Arie Navon, Dov Feigin, Michael Gross, Yeshayahu Hillel, Bezalel & Louise Schatz, Zohara Schatz, Israel Rubinstein, Yehoshua & Batia Grossbard, Claire Yaniv, Shoshana Heiman-Charny, Carmi Charny, Rudi Lehman & Hedwig Grossman, Gedalia & Rachel Ben-Zvi, Barbara Sobkiewitz, Sara Lior, Rina Ben Menahem, Yael Taub, Zagit Neter, Ella & Shmuel Ra'ayoni, Sima Slonim, Ovarid Elkara, Ora Lahav-Chaaltiel, Joseph Chaaltiel, Ben Zion & Haya Magal, Yehuda Valersteiner, Shmuel Shlesinger, Mitzy & Eliot Fay, Dr. Misha & Lucia Seibeld, Ruth Arion, Hanna Doron, Melitta Schiffer, Avri Ohana, Irm & Yohanan Samuel, Mimi & Prof. Shimon Halkin, Yehudit Reichert, Zvi Alduby, Sonia Sadron, Benjamin Kish,