Taming the Ox and Avraham Ofek

The year of the ox, 2010, was celebrated by a a weekend seminar with my calligraphy group near Caesarea beach.

We learned the ancient Chinese story Taming the Ox.

As we practiced the ancient sign, I surprisingly recalled the ox as part of the first Hebrew letter – Alefא

It is derived from the word Alef, meaning the first, the first bull of the herd.

The 22 ancient Hebrew letters derive from the Phoenician letters.

So far apart and such similarity.

So I altered a 44 year paper scroll from my father’s chemistry laboratory into an Ox Scroll.



Scroll and fragment

I was contemplating  about Avraham Ofek‘s Hieroglyphs.

Dr. Gideon Ofrat,collected and assembled a visual list of his the artists’ Hieroglyphs into a beautiful book, the first attempt to see his work as a whole. [only in Hebrew]

 בית, אברהם אופק, עבודות 1953-1986 , גדעון עפרת


This double spread from the book, is hung on my studio wall for as long as I can remember. The tiny drawings, enigmatic, archetypal and yet obvious is an endless treasure for me. An ox and a cow are portrayed here too.

At the last hour of that weekend, I drew on the shore, the Chinnese– Japanese sign and the Mediterranean sea swallowed it all soon after words.



Upper picture: Ox Sign Icon on wood, 2012

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