Roda Reilinger was an artist from Kibbut HaZorea. His faith in the power of art and the profound affinity between art and society was the beacon that guided him in his life and work. In Kibbutz HaZorea, he was actively involved in strengthening the status Wilfrid Israel Museum. As head of the National Kibbutz Painters and Sculptures Association he took part in many artistic collaborations in the Kibbutz in the fields of theatre, music, decorations for the holidays, and sculptures in the public space. Alongside his creative practice, Reilinger also engaged in art education, and spoke out on subjects like society, construction, and culture, both in the various committees and in the Kibbutz assemblies.
The focus of his activity, where he found unique expression and meaning was sculpting in the public space. The works presented in this exhibition are only the tip of the iceberg in his rich and fascinating oeuvre, a body of work that powerfully and sensitively touches on themes of memory and loss, as well as landscape and public space design. Reilinger was commissioned to design and create dozens of heritage and memorial sites in Israel, and some of his environmental sculptures are found in Germany, Denmark, and the United States.
The exhibition unfolds Reilinger’s rich and diverse oeuvre. Drawings, oil and gouache paintings that demonstrate his experiments with various techniques alongside models, sketches, and photographs of public sculptures and designs as well as set and costume design for some of the most prominent theaters in Israel, including Cameri and HaBima theatres.
Roda Reilinger was born in 1919 in Stuttgart, Germany. He came to Israel in 1939 on an illegal immigrant ship and was transferred to Atlit Detention Camp, where he started to paint and discovered his abilities in the various arts. In 1942 he arrived in Kibbutz HaZorea, where he would spend the rest of his life, devoting himself solely to art and fighting for its place and importance in society in general, and the kibbutz in particular.