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Ecclesiastes: Chapters 1-3

Ecclesiastes: Chapters 1-3

Collection:  The Five Scrolls

Others in the set:  Ecclesiastes: Chapters 4-7 and Ecclesiastes: Chapters 8-12

  • Needlework by Ilana Limoni

  • Illustrations painted by Lindy Tilp

  • Illustrations adapted by Lindy Tilp from unknown biblical pictorial books

  • Text from the Koren Tanakh (1965 edition)

  • Completed in 1997

  • It took about one year to make

Materials and technique:

  • Petit Point Canvas made from cotton with an 18 mesh mono weave (i.e., 324 stitches per square inch)

  • Threads are silk, cotton, wool and metallic fibers

  • Technique is a variety of stitches

Size with and without frame:

  • H: 86¾” (220.3 cm)   W: 37¼” (94.6 cm)

  • With frame: H: 87¼” (221.6 cm)   W: 37¾” (95.9 cm)


Process in general:

The first phase of creating a scroll panel entailed Ilana free form stitching in petit point the Hebrew text onto the canvas, referencing a graph of the Hebrew alphabet she created.  Chapters and verses start at the margin, with a new chapter also signified by a larger first letter.  Since Hebrew is written from right to left and the verses have different number of words, the left side of each panel had many blank spaces available for drawings.  Unlike other panels, Ilana did some of the artwork in this panel:  the buildings of Jerusalem at the top of this piece.  Then her artist added to this and the other open areas.  The second phase of the needlework came after the canvas was painted.  Ilana stitched the artwork first and then she covered the remainder of the canvas with a background.  Additionally, Ilana designed the border and used the same one for all of the panels in this set.


Other comments: 

The top of the canvas is a depiction of Old Jerusalem and at the bottom there are various religious objects. The illustrations along the side of the panel reflect themes found in the scroll, such as enjoying the simple pleasures of daily life. 

Over time, Ilana developed a more creative approach to her needlepointing and this scroll set reflects such variety, in comparison to her first biblical scroll, the Song of Songs panels, which were stitched uniformly in the classic basket weave.

The façade of Jerusalem was based on a picture Ilana designed onto the canvas herself. The Ecclesiastes panels are the first time Ilana added a border to her work.

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