My Name is Asher Lav

Journal 7

Chapter 11

"One of the sculptures consisted of two heads facing in the same direction. One head was Jacob Kahnís; the other was mine. They were identical to the heads we had sculpted out of wet sand along the edge of the clutching surf."

The surf at that time had destroyed both heads, but that didnít matter because both Asher and Jacob Kahn were very happy and valued the life they lived. To capture that moment in time and to capture the two heads that the surf canít take away, Jacob Kahn sculpts it. This is how he shows he loves Asher and how much he enjoys his company. Heís never used words to express his love, but art with sculptures is just as powerful and probably even more meaningful to Asher. When Asher learned that someone has bought it, he felt robbed of his happiness. Even though it wasnít his work of art, he felt empty without it and he felt almost lost. He was not happy to see it go.

During Yom Kippur Asher and Jacob Kahn dance together holding the Torah scroll. This was another time in history where they bonded and felt deep affection and a connection with each other.

When Asher congratulated Jacob Kahn on his show, "he looked bereaved." From the context, I could tell bereaved was not a positive feeling like exuberance or excitement or pride. So I checked the work up, and it means deprived. Jacob Kahn felt deprived, he looked deprived. For such a renowned artist, you would think he got used to the fact that people took your art as their own possession. I guess that feeling of emptiness never leaves. Just like when Asherís uncle bought the early Lev, he felt lost. Maybe an artist never gets over this feeling, no matter how many or your pieces are in the possession of others.

Later in the chapter Asher refuses to go to Vienna because he wonít let his father take it away from him. Aryeh took it away once at the beginning, and Asher is not about to let it happen again. Heís very stubborn about the subject but that just goes to show how much he values his art and the freedom he feels when heís painting or drawing. Asher would not be Asher without it; he would just be another Hasidic Jew, and something he wouldnít like too much.