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Bill Ressl, Box 504, Brookfield, Illinois 60513 USA


The epresence of BillRessl.US 2010 - 2012 All Rights Reserved.

Part of The Penny & Bill Company, Brookfield, Illinois 60513 USA

Bill Ressl WickerArt Tik


Completed in 1999 (click on images below for larger views) for the Philip & Sylvia Spertus Judaica Prize Competition, Spertus Museum, Chicago, Illinois. The competition is a juried, biennial competition, focused on the ongoing quest for the creation of contemporary Jewish ceremonial objects. The object featured in the 1999 competition was the Torah (the 5 books of Moses) covering or mantle (aka a tik). It is used to protect, beautify, and focus attention on the Torah which is a centerpiece in the Jewish religion as well as sacred texts in the shared prophetic traditions of Christianity and Islam. First prize winners Temma Gentles and Dorothy Ross, both of Toronto, created an Italian Barouqe inspired Torah mantle.


Custom woven around a wooden frame featuring a velvet lining. Top and bottom eight sided. Body is six sided in memory of six million Jews killed in the Holocaust. Wrapped around the tik are stripes of red, white and blue. Red symbolizes the blood of the Holocaust victims. White in remembrance of the innocence that was lost during the Holocaust. Blue symbolic of the role that water has played in numerous stories throughout the Torah. Left side panel, waters divide, Exodus (14:21), and the path leads to habitable land, Exodus (16:35). Front includes two panels that open. Seven sun rays on front symbolize Creation, Genesis (2:1-3). Front left panel features Tree of Life, Proverbs (3:18) with five branches representing the Five Books of Moses. It is growing in the midst of the garden, Genesis (2:9). Front right panel features the burning bush, Exodus (3:2). Top, Chicago flag denoting that this tik was made by a third generation Chicago-land wicker weaver. Top also has the six pointed star, the primary symbol representing the Jewish people today, but first used in Prague, Czechoslovakia (the artist's ancestral home) in 1354, when Emperor Charles IV granted the Jews the privilege of displaying their own flag on state occasions. When opened the inside features a velvet lining and special center island that features the flag of Israel, the homeland, which interlocks into the bottom when closed. Right side panel features baby Moses in basket along the river bank, Exodus (2:3). Back two panels depict Mount Sinai wrapped in smoke, because the Lord descended upon it in fire, Exodus (19:17-18). Gray stone depictions on front two and back two panels symbolize bounds around Mount Sinai, Exodus (19:12).