Nathanael Putnam

Atlanta CompetitionMedallions for good work. Italian Wedding Rings.

Ner Tamid
at Kahilat Yedidia
Jewelry at
Goldsign Competition
Personalized Gifts. Necklace
Necklace
Wearables
Wearables
Silver Grill for Clock display
Silver Grill for Clock display.

Necklace DoorShema
Front of Anusim Mezuza. | Inside parts of Anusim Mezuza. | Shema Inside.

Nathanael was a finalist in the 5763 Art exhibit of the Spertus Museum for Judaic Art. His item is a multi-layered controversial object on the topic of Mezuza.

Nathanael was a finalist of the 2002 Spertus Museum International Judaica Design Competition. This semi-annual competition focuses on introducing innovative and top of the line artistic Judaica of the highest calibre. Each competition targets a specific theme---2002 was the design of a mezuzah. Rather than going forward in modern design trends, Nathanael went backward in time to the dark days of the Spanish Inquistition, where signs of Judaism on the doorpost were invitations for trouble. He researched mezuzah history from the Middle Ages, halachah, and trends, and created a hidden mezuzah. Disguised as a "santo" or "retablo" it was found on all the doorposts and gates of traditional Catholic homes in Mexico and Southwestern U.S. Much of the project was accomplished through childhood memories of his life in the Southwest among Indians and Hispanic friends and neighbors. Surprisingly, as his research expanded, he began to find design trends among "santeros" working in the Pecos RiverValley in the Mexican Empire Period, in which clearly Hebraic signatures became apperent in the styles---Solomonic columns, the scallop shell, and certain styles of crowns. Nathanael wishes to carry on this research, but needs your help. If you have information about converso Jews in the Pecos River Valley, or any areas in the New Mexico-Texas high desert lands, or if you would like to contribute to that research, please contact us. The hidden mezuzah is a closed, hinged, and locked box shown here in four views: a. the exposed front is the traditional "retablo" showing "Our Lady of Guadeloupe", the patron saint of Mexico, as she has been traditionally portrayed over the centuries, surrounded by the ring of flames. Nathanael placed her with a "courtyard" with a closed fence and double gate, which actally opens and closes on hinges. Gold plated brass gate and backing, with copper flames, plastic statue treating with phosphorous material for night time glow. b and c: the box has been opened by its owner, now revealing the insides, and the beginning of the revelation of the mezzuzah. b. on the left side, is an amulet, with magical phrases and words of kabbalistic origins, dating from the middle ages, in gold plated brass. c. on the right hand side, shows a holy ark (aron hakodesh), in silver, done in tradional Roccoco style, with Ten Commandments on the doors of the ark. d. The doors are opened, and the mezuzah itself rests fully opened inside, covered and protected by a gold plated grill created by the Hebrew words of the Kiryat Shema prayer. The mezuzah was written k'chalachah, according to traditions of Spanish Jews. The piece was not returned after the exhibition at Spertus Museum in Chicago, and is now in a private collection of mezuzoth. It may be possible to aquire a similar one.


We are happy to show you some of Nathanael's art works. Some have prices on them. Some don't. Nathanael works in batches and in many projects. The artwork he puts into it is individual. Some pieces are examples of items made in the past and new ones will be made to order.
Please click on the pictures to see more in that category.
Ner Tamid Goldsign Contest Metal
Metal
Synagogue
Synagogue
Jewelry
Jewelry
Metal on Wood
Metal on Wood
Festive
Festive
Textile
Textile

About the Artist.
As an artist it is hard to define Nathanael Putnam and his work. He goes through different media as his mood and orders from customers direct him. He is as proficient at metal cutouts as painted cloth. He is always interested in new challenges and opportunities. He has a group of art admirers that regularly buy his creations. There are often a few pieces available to new art appreciators.

We at Tradition Gifts from Israel have decided to represent him. But in a different way than just as a craftsman who produces such and such nice items. For most items there is a range of costs depending on local material prices. We will take subscriptions for items that will be produced, if there is no item presently available. Buyers will communicate though us to him telling him of your needs.

But this should not discourage you if you are looking for a piece of art.

Nathanael Putnam
Nathanael Putnam

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This page prepared by Pinchas Richard Wimberly, webwright.

Photographs by Menachem Kaplan and Pinchas Richard Wimberly.

11/19/2013.