Shabbetai Zevi in the Visual Imagination
19 April 2016, 20:00
Shabbetai Zevi (1626-1676), the most well-known false Messiah in Jewish history, stirred the Jewish world of his time, causing many to believe that the end of days have finally arrived and that redemption of the Jewish people is near. While many great scholarly works were written on Shabbetai’s personality, ideas and large movement, little attention has been paid to the attraction of many graphic artists at the time to the charismatic figure and the events around him. It was in Amsterdam in particular that many original and captivating images were prepared to reflect the enthusiasm of the local community. In the lecture, we will examine the mythical figure of Shabbetai and his movement in Amsterdam (and elsewhere in Europe), both in Jewish and non-Jewish circles.