Monday, April 4, 2011

Blood, Sweat & Tears (of Joy)

I have two things dueling for my attention these days: Synagogue Art and Burning Man. The past several weeks have been about creating art for my synagogue. Burning Man is on the back burner, so to speak.

I’ve been in Los Angeles nearly every weekend since the end of February working collaboratively with my artist friend, Davi. She and I have worked together creating art since 1997. I love this woman! However, we are both married to a wonderful man & woman. We even celebrate our anniversaries 10 days apart – same number of years too!

So, Davi and I have been building the Eternal Light for the sanctuary. I’ve written about our process several times. I spent several weekends cutting large panes of glass into one-inch squares: about three thousand of them. It’s the kind of mindless Zen process I enjoy. It’s a meditative exercise for me.

It’s not unusual for Davi to slap me up side the head saying, “Jerry! We needed 20 of that color. You’ve cut about 200. Stop!”

We began constructing the light last weekend. Our goal was to complete it this weekend. Actually, that was MY goal. Davi’s goal was to complete it by 4:00 PM Saturday. She is a bit more OCD than I.

I arrived in LA Saturday at 9:30AM and we were in the studio working by 10:00 AM. At 10:45 AM I cut a piece of glass and sliced my finger open. The cut wasn’t “bad”. It wasn’t deep: it didn’t require stitches. It just wouldn’t stop bleeding. I was leaking all over the place. I wrapped a paper towel around my finger & kept working with Davi scolding me for “turning everything red.”

I managed to cut myself three more times before we completed the Eternal Light. Yeah. I’m a klutz, sometimes.

We finished the glass portion at 8:00 PM Saturday with Davi reminding me several times that we’d missed “our” goal.

We missed Davi’s goal, but not dinner. We closed up the studio in record time and were sitting down to dinner within 15 minutes. I crawled into bed exhausted at 9:30.

Sunday morning, I was up & showered by 6 AM. Davi was up early, too. We were both outside admiring our work in the sunlight. Natural sun through art glass is bliss. We walked around and around our work until we were both dizzy & teary eyed. We are both pleased with our work. Can I say that? Yes! I love what we created!

I glued in the light fixture and once the glue dries, I can attach the hanging mechanism and deliver the Eternal Light for installation. The building dedication is next Sunday.

And now we are onto our next project: making the mezzuot for the building. Rabbi Edwards asked us to make one. Somehow, it’s morphed into 20. Knowing me, we’ll end up making 50. It’s a Zen thing.

On a different subject, I‘m offering a couple of special deals on my artwork. I have pricing for most budgets – check them out here: Contact me if you see something you like and please visit the rest of my website while you are there. Take a look at my artwork. And, while you’re checking things out at, sign up for my Newsletter. Add some spice to your reading life….

Contact me if you want to buy one of my pieces or if you have any questions about a specific piece. My contact information is on my website or you can leave a comment on this blog site for me to contact you (include your contact info!). You can e-mail me at or you can telephone me on my studio phone 760-992-3157. You can call me. I won’t mind!

Thank you for listening,

Jerry L. Hanson


  1. I am still admiring the "Ner Tamid" in this photo - it is sooooo Cool and I don't really slap you on the head....and I am NOT OCD. Just more thoughtful (LOL) It was great fun creating with you Jerry. LOVE - :-* davi

  2. So beautiful, guys. Just perfect!