Kirshenblatt, Mayer (1916-2009)
Escorting the groom to the wedding, 1995
Acrylic on canvas
30 x 40 in.
"Kham Burekh's main business was weddings. A wedding was a very important occasion, and it was not complete without a badkhn and klezmurim, musicians. The klezmurim played not only at the wedding proper but also for the wedding processions. It was customary to escort the bride and the groom down the street to the khipe, the wedding canopy. This procession was called tsi ladn firn, to escort to sorrow, because before the wedding everything was serious. Bavaynen di kale was a ceremony during which the badkhn made everyone cry with his mournful rhymes about the end of the bride's carefree youth and the challenges of married life to come.
In my painting of escorting the groom, one man in the background is carrying the wedding canopy to the bride's home, where the ceremony would be conduced, while another is transporting the red chair that would be used for the seating and veiling of the bride."