Nitzan Hefner’s photo of a Purim seudah with Rav Chaim Shlomo Leibowitz zt”l, rosh yeshiva of Yeshivas Kamenitz in Yerushalayim and later Ponovezh Yeshiva in Bnei Brak, has won second place in a photography competition.
In 2009, Nitzan went to photograph Purim in Meah Shearim with a friend of his. A number of yeshiva bochurim went over to him and asked if he wanted to take photographs at a nearby yeshiva and he did.
As a secular Jew, Nitzan said he finds “all religious ceremonies fascinating. I love shooting these events, like Lag Ba’omer in Bnei Brak and other events.”
Nitza went to the Purim seudah for all of ten minutes. But what he got was a gem. A photograph for the ages.
“Everyone was in a great mood, with a true Purim spirit,” he said. “They were drinking, happy, and dancing. They gave us something to drink. There was a good atmosphere there.”
The photo that won the award in the Ynet and LG photography competition had disappeared for a while, Nitzav said, “and just two years ago I suddenly found it again. I said, ‘Wow. How’d I miss this? So I decided to enter this photo into the competition. It’s like a painting, the lighting, the hands in the air…”
Rav Leibowitz passed away six months ago.
The picture won second place in a special category titled “Religion and Society.”
Nitzan, who is in his 30s and is pictured below, was also awarded the title of Photographer of the Year for a collection of images he submitted to the competition.
David Steger – Matzav.com Israel