More about Menashe Kadishman
Born in 1932 in Tel Aviv, 3 years before my mother. Most artists of that generation immigrated to Israel.
Born to Bilha and Ben Zion, pioneers who settled in the Galilee, where Jesus walked on water.
At 15 his father died, and Kadishman became a shepherd in a Kibbutz and started sculpting and painting. He got to see a lot of sheep on the job and started painting them. He became particularly good at painting sheeps' eyes and literally sold thousands are these canvases.
An installation of a herd of live white sheep, which Kadishman painted with a blue stripe on the back, was the talk of the town in Venice during the Biennale of 1978. Blue and white are the colors of the Israeli flag.
In the early 60's studied sculpting in London with Anthony Caro who was later knighted for being awesome.
While the sheep paintings were his bread and butter, sculpture is his passion, and most of his sculptures are large scale.
Kadishman divorced, has two children, his son Ben is a painter..the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
His daughter Maya an actress, married to artist Eran Shakin, a real rebel, who is refusing to follow in his father in law’s footsteps and instead mainly paints goats.
The 2005 film ‘The Blue Lamb’ was made about Kadishman’s life and work. It shows his monumental sculptures being fabricated out of huge sheets of metal in a giant industrial hanger.
Clothes are redundant to Kadishman. During my visit at his 4 story studio, he wore nearly nothing, and walked around in a light white linen shirt and his underwear, no pants.
He is a friendly chap who enjoys being a celebrity. While sitting in a Tel Aviv cafe he might draw a quick black and white caricature of you, sign it with a dedication, and give it to you for free. If you ask him to dedicate a painting you bought from him, he would do it with delight!.
Kadishman is a giver. If he makes a bundle of money, he would give it away to his grandchildren. On the other hand, he is not planning to pay the city of Tel Aviv the property taxes he owes them.