Saturday, January 21, 2012

Touched by a Butterfly: David Kracov's art

(c) David Kracov
It's a snowy day here in suburban Philadelphia -- a perfect time to lounge in my jammies, catch up on reading some of my favorite blogs, discovering new ones, online shopping (shhhhh!), reflection ...and of course, there will be some crafting.

But given the snowy landscape outside and the bitter cold, I likely won't be seeing a butterfly ... and I miss them!

(c) David Kracov
So here I am minding my own business, thinking back on the new knowledge about The Butterfly Project I last blogged about, when I stumbled across (on Facebook) a beautiful picture of art done by Artist David Kracov (

This is a metal sculpture called "The Book of Life" commissioned as the Rabbi Raichik Memorial Award in honor of the beloved director of Chabad's Children of Chernobyl project.  Through that healing project (and at the time of the commission of this art), 2,547 children had been evacuated from the Chernobyl region, and provided medical care, a new home, and education in Israel.

David created this art using butterflies to represent the lives of each of those 2,547 children. 

(c) David Kracov
Seeing David's use of the butterflies here, I explored more, and found this remarkable sculpture he did on commission for the Holocaust Museum of St. Petersburg, Florida.  

And now, here's one of those "small world" sorts of connections I have to this art. The founding Executive Director of the Holocaust Museum of Florida was a warm, wonderful and loving guy named Larry Wasser.  

Larry was my first boss out of college, when he hired me to work as communications director for the March of Dimes in Philadelphia. Larry was super-fun, always good spirited, kind and what a boss!  He and his family moved to Florida a more than two decades ago.  

"My Heart is All A Flutter" (c) David Kracov

I never knew this about Larry, he never mentioned it: he was the son of Holocaust survivors Kurt and Goldie Wasser.  Larry's heart was so large that it finally gave out on June 2, 2003; he died of a massive heart attack at age 56, leaving his widow Deanna and two young sons, Kurt and Adam. 

I miss Larry!

"Reflections" (c) David Kracov

... but his work lives on, through butterflies. Today, David Kracov adds a butterfly to each and every piece of art he does, whether the theme is a butterfly or not -- whether visible or not. Why?

The Outdoor Arts Foundation (another that has commissioned works by David) says it best: 

(c) David Kracov

"The butterfly represents hope through our children. 

May children all over the world fly free as does the butterfly; 

May they be able to imagine and live a life filled with life and hope; 

May they be given a chance to reach the fulfillment of their dreams; and, 

May their aspirations soar as high as does the butterfly."


jengd said...

Thanks for posting these Ellen- they're just stunning!

Ruth said...

Love these!!! What great thoughts and memories you have - thanks so much for sharing them and this artist!

Robin said...

They are absolutely beautiful. Thanks for sharing and the wonderfully moving story.