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Children's CityCity Of HolonCulture & LeisureMunicipality

Story Gardens 

The Story Garden is a unique project of environmental sculpture, in which works inspired by beloved Hebrew children's stories were commissioned from top Israeli artists and then placed in green spaces throughout the city. This ongoing venture - the latest Story Garden was opened in 2014 - is a huge hit with both local families and visitors.

Holon thus joins the list of world cities that boast projects of museum-level landscape artwork. Such projects include works in Efteling in the Netherlands, the sculpture garden by widely known artist Niki de Saint Phalle in Italy, the Tivoli Park story corners and the story gardens in the Disneyland Resort in Paris.

The story gardens are yet another milestone in the process of turning Holon into a national cultural center for children and families, joining the Israel Children's Museum, At Eye Level Center, the Mediatheque, the Israel Puppet Center. Combining poetry and literature with plastic art, these colorful and creative environmental sculptures aim at raising awareness of children's literature, and familiarizing younger generations and new immigrants with the protagonists of Israeli children's literature. Over 40 story gardens are spread across the city, and the sculptures are surrounded by greenery, benches and playgrounds for children.

The Story Gardens project constitutes a part of Holon's green lungs, positioning Holon as one of Israel's greenest cities. Today, green areas in Holon are spread across 346 acres (to multiply over the coming years). Some 7,400 trees adorn the city and its avenues, and 150,000 flowers are planted across the city every year.

A large number of visitors from Holon and outside of Holon arrive at the Children's City, and get the opportunity to learn about the history of art and culture, and to refamiliarize themselves with some of today's most prominent pieces of classic children's literature.

Photographers: Eli Ne'eman, Tal Kirshenbaum, Tamar Mutsafi, Rami Aharoni.

An article about the story garden Feeding Frenzy
A tourist advisory about Story Gardens, published in Haaretz
An article about the story garden A Story from the Heart

List of Story Gardens:
 

A Flat to Let

“In a pretty valley amid vineyards and fields,
Stands a tower, five stories tall.
Who lives in the tower?”

Artist Richard Shilo designed an avenue of cast bronze sculptures inspired by the residents of the tower who are the characters in Leah Goldberg’s classic A Flat to Let. The figures are humorous personifications of the characters in the story, whose theme is tolerance and fraternity among very different creatures.

Landscape architect Bruce Levin was asked by the artist to create a hill that reflects an ecosystem of habitats of different species. The architect also chose to place dense greenery around the sculptures to create the effect of a natural ecosystem. The sculptures are located in the Story Garden Compound on Motta Gur Street.


For more photos, please click here.

 

 
A Story from the Heart

"As you do or do not know, out heart has a language of its own".

The park was inspired by A Story from the Heart, written by Ephraim Sidon and illustrated by Danny Kerman at the initiative of Prof. Guy Lavie, the director of the Heart Transplant Department at the Chaim Sheba-Tel Hashomer Medical Center, who came up with the idea to write a children’s book about the importance of organ donation. The story tells the tale of a little girl who needs a heart transplant, which eventually saves her life.
Sculptor Meir Trosman created the installation, making this the first park in the world with the theme of organ transplants. It hosts six sculptures of characters with colorful heart-shaped human faces. The concrete sculptures, painted with weather-resistant paint, incorporate a stage covered in dazzling mosaics on which figures of heart-faced children dance. Children visiting the park are invited to complete the circle.
The park covers about half an acre and is located in the Neveh Remez neighborhood. Landscape architect Carmela Gabriel refurbished and upgraded the site; the greenery is new and the park has been repaved and has new playground equipment and outdoor furniture.

For more photos please click here.

 
A Wedding at the Garden

Here is a story about vegetables in a garden
where absolutely anything can happen
!

The garden has been inspired by Miri Tsalalzon's book. The joyful colorful sculptures have been sculpted by artist Meir Trosman, to include a sculpture in the shape of an open book showing embossments of the vegetables around which the plot revolves, sculptures of the 'eggplant' groom, the 'tomato' bride, an old carrot and an old cucumber sitting next to each other, a potato as well as a small stage on which figurines of small radishes are dancing. The story tells of a young and beautiful tomato who is in search of happiness and love. The Story Garden, located in Kiryat Ben Gurion, borders with Hurshat HaYovel and Sderot Ben Gurion. The garden has been refurbished and it includes new outdoor furniture, lawns and playgrounds.

For more photos, please click here

 
And That Kid Is Me

Strangers I don’t know at all, from elsewhere but also from here in town, I’d like them all to know that there is one kid in the world. And that kid is me.”

Artist Ofra Zimbalista’s sculpture installation is inspired by author Yehuda Atlas’s book And That Kid Is Me. The installation consists of aluminum sculptures of children at play painted blue, typical of Zimbalista’s work. The sculptures are installed at the corner of Marvad Haksamim and Hamelacha Streets.

For more photos, please click here.

 
Caspion, the Little Fish

Once upon a time there was a sweet little silvery fish,
Brave and bright, who swam by himself in the blue waters.
Suddenly he saw a great blob, black, big and brutish.
Caspion is in trouble, for danger augurs
!”

Artist Michel Wolman designed a kinetic water sculpture made out of Corten and stainless steel, inspired by Caspion the Little Fish written by Paul Kor. The garden spreads over 1.5 acres and contains a pool and fountain where sculptures of the whale, Caspion and other fish are located. The whale is placed on a pillar high above the water and is constantly moving as a result of the hydraulic motion.
The installation is located in a park on Bin-Nun Street, which has been designed by landscape architect Bruce Levin
.


For more photos, please click here.
 
Chambaloo

"Deep, way deep under the ground, there was a scary dark lair.
Inside the lair was a treasure of a lost kingdom,
The treasure has been there for many, many years. Maybe a thousand.
The keeper of this treasure was a scary big dragon named Chambaloo."

The Chambaloo story garden at 7 Hagalil Street is based on a book by Ronnie Heffer. The story is about a dragon guarding an ancient treasure in a lair, about the chivalrous Hans who is in search of the treasure and is ready to fight for it, and about the wondrous friendship that develops between Hans and the dragon.
Artist Noga Spector created the three large concrete sculptures covered with colorful mosaic. Chambaloo the dragon, the treasure chest and the dragon’s lair are located in one of the city’s oldest gardens, remodeled and planned by landscape architect Carmela Gabriel.

For more photos, please click here

 
Corn on the Cob

“Who doesn’t know Ofir?
Ofir loves to sing and play
And on a hot summer’s day –
Likes corn on the cob for an entrée.”

Designers Yael Tevet and Roey Roth are graduates of the prestigious Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem and specialize in designing “total experiences” and interdisciplinary works. They created a gorgeous sculpture of an enormous corncob next to a weather vane featuring the beloved figures of Ofir, Liron and their friends, along with wind chimes that tinkle pleasantly.

The work was inspired by the beloved children’s book Corn on the Cob, that was written by the well-known children’s author and one of the founders of Kibbutz Shaar Hagolan, Miriam Roth, and illustrated by Ora Eyal. The sculptures were installed in the entrance and central courtyard of the Klein Community Center in the Tel Giborim neighborhood.

For more photos, please click here

 

 
המטריה הגדולה של אבא
Daddy's Big Umbrella

"Tal’s mother said:
Today to nursery school you’ll go
Though the rain is beating on the window.
The rain is beating – let it, though!
I’ll take Daddy’s big umbrella. Let’s go!”

Artist Uri Doshi has created a breathtakingly colorful series of iron sculptures inspired by Daddy’s Big Umbrella by Levin Kipnis, one of the first authors of Hebrew children’s literature in Israel. The sculptures are located at the entrance to the Hayovel Grove, located west of Kiryat Ben Gurion. The remodeling of the grove has been planned by landscape architect Carmela Gabriel.

For more photos, please click here.

 

 
הדינוזאור של דודו
Dudu's Dinosaur
Artist Miri Kolan has designed a series of concrete sculptures shaped as colorful, cute and attractive dinosaurs. The sculptures have been inspired by the book Dudu's Dinosaur by Racheli Fleishon, a kindergarten teacher and a Holon resident, whose book describes the adventures of three children and an additional protagonist - the dinosaur. The book is based on her husband's childhood. The sculptures, arranged in the shape of a swirling snail according to the sequence of events in the book, are located at the entrance of Hurshat Hayovel, west of Ben Gurion Quarter. The remodeling of the park has been planned by architect Carmela Gabriel.

For more photos, please click here
 
גן סיפור
Dwarfs, Mushrooms and What Else?

One morning, three dwarfs woke up,
Dwarf number one,
Dwarf number two,
Dwarf number three.
They saw the sun was shining and said,
‘Let’s all go out for a walk instead’
.”

Artist Gadi Fraiman designed a group of stone and marble mushrooms and bronze dwarfs that tell the story Dwarfs, Mushrooms and What Else? written and llustrated by Alona Frankel. Children and adults are invited to touch the sculptures and sit on the mushrooms that are located in the Story Garden Compound on Motta Gur Street. The park was designed by landscape architect Bruce Levin.

For more photos, please click here.

 
Eliezer and the Carrot

Who, who out there wants to hear the story of the carrot
That was planted from seed in the vegetable patch by Grandpa Eliezer
.”

For the park on 10 Moshe Sharet Street, artist David Fein created a series of chiseled stone sculptures on the basis of the famous story Eliezer and the Carrot by Levin Kipnis, one of the first authors of Hebrew children’s literature in Israel. In the Eliezer and the Carrot Story Garden you can find Grandpa Eliezer pulling the carrot surrounded by Grandma Elisheva, their granddaughter Avigail, Bow-wow the puppy, Lickety the cat, and Earlybird the gray mouse. All surround Grandpa Eliezer and the giant carrot that is finally pulled out of the ground.
Sharon Elishakov of the Parks and Landscaping Department of the Holon Municipality planned the renewal of the park and its adaptation to the new sculptures.

For more photos, please click here.

 

 
Feeding Frenzy

 This is the story, which is also a parable"
About Pizzi that made a scandal from every bite
But today, he is not leaving a crumb
And laughing out loud as he recalls the story
"

The story garden was inspired by the book Feeding Frenzy written by the author Sima Lahat, a local Holon resident, and her granddaughter Amit Meiron. They hatched a plot related to the challenges parents experience when it comes to feeding their children. Sculptor Miri Kolan created the sculptures in a colorful and cheerful manner: a train moving into an open mouth, a loveable baker, and figures of people that are chasing after a child in order to feed him.
 The illustrator, Uri Wisler, copied the original illustrations of the book; the garden itself was designed by architect Carmela Gabriel. The gardens signage is also unique and designed by Kolan in the shape of different kinds of food - such as a croissant, a pepper and a candy.
The garden includes: playground facilities for toddlers, furniture, wide lawns and landscaping. This story garden is the connecting link to the sequence of story gardens which are located at the Jesse Cohen quarter from the Mamushi the Rabbit story garden to the Tower Blocks I Built story garden.

 For more photos, please click here 

 

 
Holon Fables

One morning, Holon residents wake up to find all the figures from the fables of Krylov, La Fontaine and Aesop dancing down the city streets, telling stories, arguing, and teaching each other lessons. The people of Holon, including Ayelet, the Yekke, Officer Abutbul and others, react, take a stance, and judge the events.
The story Holon Fables was written by O. Hillel; it provided the inspiration for artist Dvora Yaron to create fantastical childhood figures of aliens and animals. The bronze and aluminum sculptures, painted in vivid shades of the rainbow, are located in Getzel Kressel Alley in front of the Kiryat Ben Gurion Community Center.

For more photos, please click here

 

 
I Built a Tower of Blocks

Today Inbal is building a tower of blocks.
One brown block, a second block – a yellow one, above it,
And the third block – brown.
Be careful, be careful Inbal,
So your tower won't tumble down
.

Located at the Jessie Cohen quarter, this Story Garden is especially geared towards toddlers and young children.
The sculptures of the garden were inspired by the well-known children's book by Deborah Omer I Built a Tower of Blocks – a compilation of short stories for one, two and three year old toddlers. The stories portray the everyday life of young children, their world and close environment in a clear and articulate language. The colorful illustrations by illustrator Nurit Yovel beautifully complement the stories.
The Story Garden features very large and colorful building blocks forming a play zone for children. The garden is easily accessible, and offers newly renovated playground facilities, lighting and greenery.
Ha-Sanhedrin Street, Jessie Cohen, Holon.

For more photos, please click here
.

 
איתמר פוגש ארנב
Itamar Meets a Bunny

"Itamar thinks... a bunny is a big animal like an elephant, it has plenty of teeth and even a tail. Itamar is convinced bunnies devour children."


Artist Orit Mazurik designed several scenes consisting of sculpted, colorful, smiling figures inspired by the story Itamar Meets a Bunny by author David Grossman. Children are invited to be part of the plot.
The sculptures are located in Hurshat Hayovel, situated west of Kiryat Ben Gurion. Landscape architect Carmela Gabriel has performed the remodeling of Hurshat Hayovel.


For more photos, please click here.