Shuval Tree of Life
Date 5767 (2007)
The artist succeeded yet again to try to bring together the ideas of the customer together with his own visual impressions. Once again, Jerusalem was to play an important role in the design, together with the major element that the customer wanted -- a Tree of Life and Norman succeeded in vizualizing the text in three dimensions, wrapping it, so to speak, around the tree.
One aspect of this ketuba, quite different from most others that the artist has made is the choice of decorative quotes, encircling the tree to symbolize the never-ending ring. Some are from the Scriptures, but one is a stanza from the lyrics of a popular song by the Israeli artist, David Broza. Norman also included the quote that the couple used on their invitation.
A detail from the text where, if you look closely, you will see the the word "ha-Levi" in gold as Miriam's father is a Levi.
A detail of the Jerusalem landscape and, floating on the hill, is Psalm 137, the famous Psalm that is read by the groom just before he crushes the glass at his feet, ending the wedding ceremony.
A detail of the foliage surrounding the tree.
Placed at the top of the ketuba, bordering the top of the tree, is the famous stanza from the prayer one recites on returning the Torah scroll to the ark after reading from the portion of that week. The extract says the the Torah is like a Tree of Life to those that hold it and to those that follow the faith, it brings only joy.