Growing a Greenhouse

A painting from a collection inspired by various military vehicles, by Shelomo Shosha (photo credit: ADA NAAMANI)
A painting from a collection inspired by various military vehicles, by Shelomo Shosha
(photo credit: ADA NAAMANI)
War never truly ends. It lives on, imparted into the minds of those involved, claimed poet Yehuda Amichai. The Greenhouse Rehabilitation Center in Rehovot provides art therapy as an out- let for the ongoing trauma which patients face on a daily basis. In honor of Remembrance Day and Independence Day, the rehabilitation center is dis- playing the works of its patients to the public for the first time. “War That Never Had Enough” serves to acknowledge those who suffer from injuries of war and terror attacks, providing a further platform for them to share their stories. Greenhouse, a rehabilitation center for disabled IDF veterans and victims of terrorist attacks, aims to aid in the recovery of those who are disabled and/or suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. Open Sun- day through Wednesday, the center caters to about 80 people; patients participate in support groups, gardening, sports and art therapy.
Curator Ada Naamani explains, “The exhibition creates import- ant momentum for public exposure of people whose lives and family’s lives have been changed by war.” The art therapy the patients undergo allows them to find a sense of comfort through self-expression. “Some of them have never painted, and painting has been a real discovery. Painting provides people who have been affected by the events over which they had no control a way of dealing with a medium that allows them to regain a sense of control,” Naamani adds. Works in the exhibition include landscapes by 10 painters, a painting series of various war machinery by Shelomo Shosha, and a series of still lifes by David Zehavi. Much of the art on display is related to the traumatic experiences that haunt the patients. “With some who paint, I find that the focus and concentration on one subject, which is characterized by the repeated handling of disturbing wishes to find himself, relieves much pain if not fully serving as a solution,” says Naamani.
This coping mechanism has helped many patients in the past and continues to help those who have been wounded in battle or suffer from the physical and emotional aftermath of terrorist attacks. “The paintings will give a voice to the previously unheard pa- tients, and the stamp of the ongoing war on the existence of Israel. Through this artistic expression, victims can express and assuage the continued pain and find understanding of their new circumstances,” Naamani says. These few days of commemoration are not just about reflecting on the history of Israel and past struggles but also recognizing and understand those that are ongoing. “I hope this exposure will inspire greater awareness of empathy and caring for the victims, as well as the Israeli public,” says Naamani. • “War That Never Had Enough” runs through June 10 at Beit Yad Lebanim, 10 Habanim Street, Rehovot. Entrance is free. A painting from a collection inspired by various military vehicles, by Shelomo Shosha. (Photos: Ada Naamani) Oil painting by a Greenhouse patient.