On a green hillside in the western Galilee is the Gottesman Etching Center. It is housed in a vast, clean space at Kibbutz Cabri that hums with a hive-like vibe of peaceful, focused productivity. The workshop’s large windows overlook mountains and sea, the light pours in on the streamlined structures of printing presses, and the walls are pinned with etchings in progress, experiments and successes. Founded in 1993, the workshop offers residencies and classes with artists from both Israel and abroad; over the years, their lineup has included Menashe Kadishman, Jim Dine, Zadok Ben-David, Hila Lulu Lin, Hannah Farah-Kufer Bir’im, and many others. Gottesman also produces exquisite portfolios and artists’ books, and their building includes a pristine exhibition area where prints are shown to the visiting public.
The Gottesman Center’s role as part of a busy kibbutz is integral to its mission: “Art acts as a stimulus,” according to their motto, “and contributes both to the community and its individuals as well as to enterprise.” The perspective here, as throughout this forward-looking nation, is that creativity must be fostered, and that through an open exchange of ideas and a willingness to see beyond preconceptions—that is, by thinking artistically—Israel may follow a course to a successful and peaceful future.