"...And God said: 'Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years...' " (Genesis, 1:14)
In this Ketubah, the text, representing the marriage, is in the center, surrounded by three circles of Time: night and day, the months, and the four seasons. Time passes, the seasons flow, everything around us turns and changes with the vicissitudes of life, but the union established in marriage, the creation of a new, loving family and home, provide stability, steadfastness and strength.
The seasons, flowing and merging into each other between the four corners of the painting, show the yearly cycle of spring flowers budding and blossoming, summer fruits swelling with richness and juice, autumn leaves turning from fresh green to fall flames, and finally, winter's bare branches covered with frost.
But the bare branches gradually bud again, the buds blossom, and Nature's never-ending cycle of hope and renewal continues. The cycle of the night and day calls to mind Psalm 19: "the heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth His handiwork; day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night revealeth knowledge". It shows the sunset, the sunrise, the moon and stars, and the sun, "as a bridegroom coming out from under his canopy" (Ibid,19, 6). The cycle of the months is represented by the Zodiac, which may also suggest certain values and blessings for the marriage, for example: balance (Tishrei); brotherly love, peace and friendship (Sivan); strength and action (Kislev, Av); softness and tenderness (Nisan); youth and purity (Elul); fruitfulness (Adar); hard work (Iyar); and growth and renewal (Shvat), blessings which may counter and overcome the dark forces of life (Cheshvan), the inescapable cold of winter and the darkness of night.
This print has been printed in the giclee technique on 140 lbs. 100% rag paper. Colors are non-fading, for at least 85 years.