Esther: Chapters 1-4
Collection: The Five Scrolls
Others in the set: Esther: Chapters 4-8 and
Esther: Chapters 8-10
Needlework by Ilana Limoni
Illustrations painted by Lindy Tilp
Origin of main illustration: Eric Adkin’s ceiling painting at the International Temple in Washington D.C.
Text from the Complete Hebrew Bible found here
Completed in 2013
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,
plus different kinds of beads are embedded
Technique is a variety of stitches
Size with and without frame:
H: 91¼” W: 36”
With frame: H: 92” W: 36¾”
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 small blank spaces to be filled with simple drawings. Also, Ilana reserved the top of the canvas for a significant illustration. 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.
The scene depicted in this panel is of Esther coming to the king unbidden, thus risking her own life to beg for the life of her people.
For variety, Ilana embedded beads into the Esther panels. This is the first time she incorporated such material into any of her needlework.