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The PjCC is proud to be a part of the Initiative on Jewish Peoplehood presenting educational and cultural programs that explore Jewish heritage, identity, and community. This initiative is co-funded by the Koret Foundation, Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture and other Bay Area funders.

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The PJCC is currently accepting artist submissions for our upcoming gallery season.

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Cultural Arts Coordinator


PJCC Art Gallery Exhibits

The Art Gallery at the Peninsula Jewish Community Center is committed to showcasing the works of talented Jewish artists as well as presenting exhibits that explore Jewish values, themes and ideas. It is our hope that along with adorning our walls, the exhibits will serve to stimulate personal thought and lively conversations among our members and guests.

During your next visit to the PJCC stop by our gallery located in our lobby and in the Koret Learning Center hall. Exhibits are free and open to the public!

The PJCC Art Gallery presents

Dance Dreams

Contemporary Dance in Israel
Featuring photographs by Michael Cohen
January 13 – March 23, 2016

dance dreams exhibit

A Brief Overview of Professional Dance in Israel
“In the communal and religious life of the Jewish people, dance has been regarded as an expression of joy and sorrow since biblical times and is today an integral part of religious, national, community, and family celebrations. Contemporary dance has developed in two directions: expansion of the folk dance genre which accompanied the early settlers in the rebuilding of their ancient homeland; and the establishment of art dance, leading to stage productions created by professional choreographers and performed by trained dancers.

dance dreams exhibit pjccDance as an art form was introduced in the country in the 1920s by newly arrived teachers and devotees of dance from the cultural centers of Europe. Today more than a dozen major professional dance companies, most of them based in Tel Aviv, perform a varied repertoire throughout the country and abroad.” (Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

This exhibition is in no means comprehensive coverage of Israel’s professional dance scene (missing would be works by Barak Marshall, Inbal Pinto and Vertigo to name a few). The intention is to honor the beauty, innovation, artistry, strength, precision and growing prominence of dance in Israel; appreciate the moment in space captured and preserved in print; and reflect mindfully on the sensations the images inspire. 

About the Artist
Michael Cohen was born in 1943 in Kibbutz Givat Brenner, Israel. His artistic journey began when he received his first camera as a child at 13. Cohen loves working with dance as a subject matter. A graduate of the air force academy, Cohen, an IAF (Israeli Air Force) Colonel, ret. and former flight instructor says,  “photographing dance reminds me of the old days when I was a pilot in the IAF, since the subject is always on the move.” He writes, “The movement of the body has the ability to express joy, love, disappointment, sadness, etc. with no need for voice.” Stage lighting is central to Cohen’s dance photography.  He uses original approaches to composition and color while maintaining high technical standards.

Related Programs

About if I Were You – Project Israel

Through the generous support of the Fulbright Program and the United States State Department, Casey Lee Thorne conducted workshops for If I Were You - Project Israel from October 2014 - July 2015, honoring the voices of both Israelis and Palestinians to examine the role of dance in self-discovery and community-building in the region
If I Were You – Project Israel is a community outreach based project that directly engages global citizens in the creative process and development of a new contemporary ballet work, while simultaneously serving as a means for cultural exchange and mutual understanding.

February 1 at 2:00 pm
Food for Thought presents
If I Were You: Dancers Across Borders
Hear more about Casey Lee Thorne’s Fulbright Experience in Israel and hear her perspective of dance as social justice.

February 23 at 5:30 pm
Pop-Up Dance Performance
See a live excerpt of if I Were You – Project Israel performed by two dancers from Thorne’s Inside Out Contemporary Ballet during our Happier Hour on Tuesday, February 23 from 5:30 - 7:00 pm.

Registration is available for both programs at the PJCC Welcome Center.


This exhibition was produced by artist representative Simcha Moyal.

Special thanks to Batsheva Dance Company for select images.

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The PJCC is a non-profit organization that relies upon generous donations to continue serving our community and those in need. A beneficiary agency of the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties and the Jewish Community Endowment Fund. The PJCC is a proud member of the North Peninsula Jewish Campus and of the JCC Association of North America.

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