Art & Culture in Israel

Travel to Israel with the Mizel Museum
October 15-25, 2012

Experience Israel from a unique perspective on this one-of-a-kind trip that’s been hand-crafted just for the Mizel Museum. A renowned Israeli curator and art consultant will lead us in the exploration of Israeli art, culture, historic and off-the-beaten-path destinations. We’ll experience private art collections and studios, enjoy vibrant cinema and music, and tour historic cities and villages. We’ll meet established and emerging artists, check out local art scenes, get creative with art workshops and relax in Israel’s finest boutique hotels.

Mt. Carmel

Mt. Carmel


Monday, October 15 Departure to Israel from Denver International Airport

Tuesday, October 16 Bruchim Haba’im: Welcome to Israel
Arrival at Ben Gurion airport at 9:25 a.m. Program introduction and tour of the Holon Design Museum, one of the world’s leading museums of design and contemporary culture. Check in and refresh at the Cinema Hotel in Tel Aviv overlooking famous Dizengoff Square. Visit the Nalaga’at Center, Old Jaffa and the Jaffa Salon for Palestinian Art (Read the museum curator’s blog post about the Na Laga’at Center). At the Na Laga’at Center for the Deaf, Blind and Mute, participate in the amazing emotional and artistic endeavor of creating sculpture with just your hands, no eyes allowed! The cutting edge Jaffa Salon for Palestinian Art is the first and only gallery in the Tel Aviv area that exhibits exclusively Palestinian art. This unique gallery is making a special effort to create opportunities for young, talented artists by exposing their work on a stage located at the center of the Israeli artistic scene. Finally, a private tour and gourmet dinner in the home of one of Tel Aviv’s most respected art collectors, with cocktails on a balcony overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. The Cinema Hotel is a landmark Bauhaus building, and was the original home to the Tel Aviv cinema. Throughout the hotel are artifacts symbolizing the hotel’s former life. Classic movies are screened continuously in the lobby.

Holon Design Museum

Holon Design Museum

Wednesday, October 17 The Slopes of Mt. Carmel
Travel north to Umm el-Fahem, the largest Arab city in Israel and the Umm el-Fahem Art Gallery, Israel’s first and most important gallery of Palestinian art. Situated in the heart of a dense Arab agricultural population, this first-ever Arab museum provides a bridge between the past, present and future.  The creative workshops, seminars, gallery talks, symposiums and unique display spaces have turned it into a central place in the local and international culture scene. Tour the gallery with its director, Said Abu Shakra (Read more about Umm el-Fahem, Shakra and Palestinian Art). Continue on to Ein Harod on the western slopes of Mt. Carmel, the only village of its kind in Israel. Participate in a glass blowing workshop with world-class artist Alex Arbel. Then north to Haifa for an evening with sculptor, painter, carpenter and cook Shahar Sivan, a member of Ha’agaf (The Wing) Art Gallery and the fascinating art cooperative Block Group. Sivan also runs the Nemala Haifa studio. He’ll prepare dinner and introduce us to Haifa’s exciting art scene, including underground movie screenings, secret bars, poetry evenings, performances, parties, and we’ll have a vibrant discussion with a panel of emerging artists. Spend the night at the Colony Hotel, a beautifully refurbished hotel built over 100 years ago by the Templars, with an inspiring view of the world famous Baha’i Gardens and the Port of Haifa.

Thursday, October 18 A Galillee Mosaic
Spend the morning at Kibbutz Cabri overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and the mountains of the Upper Galillee. It’s the perfect venue to inspire the arts. Participate in a printmaking workshop at the Gottesman Etching Center and visit the Yehiel Shemi Estate for a guided tour of the works of Shemi. Ascend to Zefat, City of Mystics, at the crest of one the highest mountains in the region. Here Jewish mysticism flourished in the middle ages. Today, that same tradition inspires artist from all over the world, situated in an ascetic setting of stark buildings overlooking Mt. Meron, the highest mountain in Northern Israel. Meet with David Friedman, originally from Denver and one of the leaders of Zefat’s mystical artists. Overnight at the Mitzpe Hayamim Spa Hotel, one of the most beautiful in Israel, with spectacular panoramic views Mount Hermon, the Golan Heights, and the Sea of Galilee. After a sumptuous dinner, enjoy a treatment at the spa, one of Israel’s first and finest!

Friday, October 19 100 Years of Israeli Art
Travel to Kibbutz Ein Harod to visit its art museum, the first museum established on a kibbutz at the height of Israel’s War of Independence. The museum was founded by kibbutz members with the belief that culture and art are among the essential components of a society, and it was built before other essential physical needs of the kibbutz society were met. The building’s avant garde architecture and panoramic view of the Jezreel Valley and Mount Gilboa, as well as its collection of over 16,000 works of art and Judaica dating back to the 17th century, make it a beacon of Israeli art in northern Israel. The tour will be led by one of the museum’s curators. Continue to Jerusalem to meet with the Sala Manca in Ein Karem and enjoy Shabbat dinner at the homes of Jerusalem artists and collectors. Accommodations at Mt. Zion Hotel.

Saturday, October 20 Shabbat in Jerusalem
Visit the Israel Museum for a tour and gallery lecture. The Museum was recently refurbished, reopening in 2010 after a 3-year, $100 million renovation led by curator James Snyder, formerly the curator of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and rated one of the 100 most influential people in the art world today.  After Shabbat, participate in a workshop with Jerusalem artist David Moss, who single-handedly revived the Ketuba (marriage document) from a piece of legal Jewish functionality to a work of art. His creativity has raised the genre of Judaica to a level worthy of display in museums throughout the world. Participate in an insightful workshop with Moss’s organization, Hol Ha’Ot, which uses art in an interactive and exciting way to explore and convey great Jewish concepts.

Ein Hod Artist Colony

Ein Hod Artist Colony

Sunday, October 21 To the Desert
Meet with Shai Azoulai, a Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design graduate and young award-winning painter in his Jerusalem studio. Born in Israel in 1971, Azoulay lives and works in Jerusalem. His work addresses the two conflicting worlds found in the mind of the contemporary painter: the classic, iconic, romantic and spiritual world on one side, and the modern, moonstruck and saturated world on the other. His work has been shown at the Israel and Tel Aviv Museums and in galleries in Israel, New York, and Rome. Visit the home and studio of Jerusalemites David and Andi Arnovitz, including Andi’s studio, in the eclectic Baka neighborhood, built in the classical Jerusalem architectural style that reflects the meeting of the East and West. The architecture in Baka dates back to the early 20th century. Andi is an internationally acclaimed painter and print-maker whose love of Jerusalem and Israel is expressed in her art. Travel south to the Negev and visit the graves of Israel’s founding father David Ben Gurion and his wife Paula. Their modest graves overlook the Wilderness of Zin, where the Children of Israel wandered during 40 years in the desert. Travel to the Gallery House in Moshav Ashalim to meet sculptor Margalit Kitay Wizman. Margalit chose to live and work in the desert 26 years ago and will tell the story of her journey through her clay sculptures, which represent complex themes from the Bible, the desert, good and evil and love. On to Mitzpe Ramon on the edge of the Ramon Crater, and the Beresheet Hotel, Israel’s newest and most beautiful spa hotel where pools overlook the cliff of the crater. Participate in a movement workshop with the Adama Company, a group founded by dancers Liat Dror and Nir Ben Gal that uses the desert as a venue to explore art in an incredibly refreshing and unique fashion. Spend the night at the Beresheet Hotel.

Monday, October 22 The Negev: Israel’s Periphery

Arnowitz Home Baka

Arnowitz Home, Baka, Israel

Optional early morning walk and yoga on the edge of the crater. Travel to the Western Negev city of Sderot, home of several of Israel’s leading musicians and a place where music and film are thriving. Sderot’s annual Film Festival seems to defy the threats that are often felt here. Continue north to the Elah Valley, site of the Biblical confrontation between David and Goliath and home of the Ela Valley Winery, one of Israel’s finest. Continue back to Tel Aviv for a free evening in a city that Lonely Planet rated as the third “most happening city in the world!” Overnight at the Cinema Hotel.

Tuesday, October 23 Tel Aviv and the Arts
Get a cutting edge view into video art at The Center for Contemporary Art (CCA), which was founded to promote time-based and contemporary artistic practices in Israel. The CCA also maintains an archive of over 3,000 videos by Israeli and international artists, with works from the 1960s to the present. Next visit the MFA program at Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design. Bezalel’s many generations of graduates have been lead the way in their fields in Israel and across the globe. The Academy’s unique strength lies in its ability to respond swiftly to cultural changes, as demonstrated by the numerous artistic breakthroughs for which it has been responsible. Explore the galleries on Rothschild Boulevard and enjoy lunch in a trendy eatery. Meet one of contemporary Israel’s most outstanding authors, Etgar Karet, called a genius by the New York Times, and then enjoy free time for dinner in one of Tel Aviv’s world class restaurants. After dinner meet Deborah Friedes and participate in one of the most exciting dance techniques in the world–an interactive Gaga Dance Workshop in the stunning Suzanne Dellal Center in the historic Neveh Tzedek neighborhood (Read Deborah’s Blog). Overnight at the Cinema Hotel.

Ein Hod Art Gallery

Ein Hod Gallery

Wednesday, October 24 Last Thoughts
Our last day will begin in Tel Aviv’s super-chic new Fashion District in Gan Hahashmal, or Electric Garden, named after the power plant that once functioned here. Visit Israel’s internationally acclaimed Shenkar Design School. Meet with Russian-Israeli director Ivgeny Aryeh of the Gesher Improvisational Theater. Founded by Russian actors who immigrated to Israel in 1991 during the first Gulf War, the theatre was symbolically named Gesher, or bridge in Hebrew. It was founded when a group of FSU actors crowded in a small cellar in Tel Aviv, rehearsing Hebrew texts transcribed into Cyrillic alphabet, running in their costumes and gas-masks to the nearest shelter each time the sirens wailed to warn of an Iraqi missile attack. Over the years the theater has thrived and Gesher was hailed as “The Russian Miracle of Israeli Theatre.” Return to your hotel to freshen up and then close our incredible journey in Herzliya in the beautiful home of Bill Gross, who has collected Judaica ”from Bratslav to Baghdad” for over 40 years.

Thursday, October 25
Arrive in Denver on Continental flight #1643 from Newark at 11:23 am.

A $500 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your reservation.

Reservation Form
  • Price $5,020 includes airfare and double accupancy/shared rooms, all breakfasts and select dinners. Tips for tour guides/bus drivers not included. Price without airfare is $3,330.
  • Tour Guide Ayelet Danielle Aldouby, ADA Art Consulting
  • All breakfasts and most dinners are included in the package price.
  • Speakers’ participation subject to confirmation; if any of the speakers listed are not available, a similar speaker will be arranged.

Itinerary is proprietary to Keshet and ADA Art Consulting and is intended for the promotion of this Keshet trip. It is not to be transmitted to parties not interested in joining this trip without prior authorization from Keshet.

For reservations, information and to receive trip updates contact Georgina Kolber, Mizel Museum Curator at or call (303) 749-5014.