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November/December 2009 Centerfold

Silent Sounds by Laurie Alpert | Artscope Magazine
art: Silent Sounds
artist: Laurie Alpert
medium: polyester plate lithograph, handmade book. (Photo by Clements-Howcroft Photography)

I recently traveled to Israel. Spirituality and religion never entered into my work until I saw the Dead Sea Scrolls at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. What intrigues me about the content of the scrolls is the fact that the text is both biblical and cultural. The manuscripts give us insight into behavior,military regulations, customs, political persecution and spiritual life, something that has always fascinated me. I was also struck by the complexity of the political situation there. While visiting the Golan Heights, I photographed a sculpture of a kneeling soldier pointing a gun. This image has become a haunting motif in my work and creates a political edge to the otherwise unbiased nature of the work. Another significant element in my work is my mother’s music. She was a professional violinist whose career had a great impact on my life. This represents my personal history; the scrolls represent my past history. The ancient Hebrew text coexists with the music while the music transcends language.

More of Alpert’s work may be seen at