Rutu Modan

Rutu Modan, born 1966, is an Israeli born illustrator and comic book artist. After graduating with distinction from the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem, she edited the Hebrew edition of MAD magazine with Yirmi Pinkus. Together they founded the Actus Tragicus comics group in 1995. Modan received the Young Artist of the Year award in 1997 and the Best Illustrated Children's Book award from the Youth Department of the Israel Museum in 1998. In 2005, she was chosen as an outstanding artist of the Israel Cultural Excellence Foundation. 

Naomi Polani

A force to be reckoned with, Polani, born in Tel Aviv in 1927, is a singer, musical director, stage director and actor who is associated with Israel's musical history from its onset during the early years of the State: from the Chisbatron in 1949, the army's entertainment unit, to the beloved group "Ha'Tarnegolim" (The Roosters) in the early 1960s. Songs for the group's shows were written for them by Israel's best songwriters. Her musical and stage direction set the style of the times and catapulted many young careers. Among them Sheike Levi, Gavri Banai and Yisrael Poliakov (Poli), later to become Ha'gashash Ha'hiver, Yoram Gaon, Lior Yeni, and Aliza Rosen. Polani is still active. In 2009 she had a role in an Ibsen play at Habima National Theatre and she can be seen in the film Someone to Run With (2003).
Here are two songs performed by Ha'Tarnegolim, both about love in its many forms:

Lea Goldberg

Lea Goldberg (1911-1970) was born in Konigsberg, East Prussia (now Kaliningrad, Russia)  and started writing poetry in Hebrew as a schoolgirl in Kovno. After completing her Ph.D. in Semitic Languages at Bonn University, Germany, she immigrated to pre-state Israel in 1935.

Goldberg was a member of the Shlonsky group of modern poets and began publishing her work in literary journals associated with them. She was a renowned poet and a successful children's author, as well as a theater critic, translator and editor. In 1952, she established the Department of Comparative Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and was its chairperson until her death. Goldberg published 10 books of poetry, two novels, three plays, two books of essays and non-fiction, and several books for children.

Her books for children such as Dirah Le'haskir (A Flat For Rent), Ayeh Pluto (Where is Pluto), and Kovah Ha'ksamim (The Magic Hat) are still considered the "musts" of every Israeli child's book, video, and music collection. In recent polls of 'all time favorite children's books,' three of her's made the Top 10 List.

Goldberg was awarded many prizes, including the Israel Prize for Literature (1970, posthumous). Her work has been published in 27 languages.

Less than a decade ago, after more than a year of heated debates on who are Israel's most beloved and revered poets, the Bank of Israel released new notes: Rachel the Poetess on the 20 shekel note, Saul Tchernichovsky on the 50 shekel note, Lea Goldberg on the 100 shekel note, and Natan Alterman on the 200 shekel note. [Learn more about Israel's bank notes in our resource, Money Talks]

  • One sample song (perhaps the most celebrated) from the Songs of My Beloved Land
  • Books
  • Musical CD: Singing Lea Goldberg
    • This unique musical collection has all the greatest songs written with the poetry of Lea Goldberg, one of the most famous Jewish poets and writers of the last century. All the songs are performed by top Israeli female artists.
  • A Documentary film: The Five Houses of Lea Goldberg by Director Yair Qedar
    • Lea Goldberg continues to be an enigmatic figure– she is Israel's most beloved poet, a powerful woman who lived with her mother and never married, a woman who invented herself from the ashes of WWII through her magical poetry. The film is a cinematic fantasy in five acts, using animation, after effects, archives, still photos, original music and interviews that celebrate the fascinating story of Lea Goldberg.

Visual Arts: Female Artists from the Religious Community