Muse & Schmooze: Jewish Jack-O-Lanterns

While Halloween may not exactly be a Jewish holiday, it’s still a fun holiday to get creative and spend time with friends and family. (And really, what’s more Jewish than that?!) Purim rivals Halloween on the costume front, but in the realm of jack-o-lanterns, Halloween has a monopoly. So in the spirit of the holiday, I found several insanely cool carved pumpkins with Jewish inspiration that all of us—regardless of whether we celebrate Halloween—can appreciate for their artistic value:

M.C. Escher’s “Sun and Moon”
In the 2011 This Old House magazine pumpkin-carving competition, this beauty using a pattern from features a tessellation by the incomparable M.C. Escher. Check out this year’s winners to be in awe of what people can do with a pumpkin and a few tools.

Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein was a famous Jewish genius, and it takes a true genius like Scott Cummins, aka Pumpkin Gutter, to capture his likeness in gourd. He’s also taken on M.C. Escher with an insane rendition of “Drawing Hands.”

Mr. Spock
Not only is this jack-o-lantern the spitting image of Leonard Nimoy, he’s even making the Cohen symbol, or Vulcan salute! Check out @ThePumpkinGeek for more clever creations.

Bob Dylan
If you haven’t caught the crazy-talented duo Maniac Pumpkin Carvers on “Good Morning America,” The Food Network or the many other places they’ve appeared this season, this is your moment. From great Jewish musicians like Bob Dylan to replicas of works by Gustav KlimtBanksy and more, these guys are true artists.

This one might not be an artistic masterpiece like the others, but how can I resist when Halloween and Shabbat coincide this year? If you’re in the holiday mash-up mood, Tablet Magazine has a fun recipe for a sweet “Challahween” treat!

Happy Halloween!

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