Dan Barag

MUTED COLORS, MINUTE DETAILS. Peacocks clutch a bunch of grapes in the corners of this elaborate mosaic from the Byzantine-era synagogue at Ein Gedi. In the center of the mosaic, two pairs of peacocks are nested within two rectangles, a diamond and a circle. When excavators lifted this mosaic, they discovered an earlier mosaic floor in simple black and white. Shockingly, featured on the mosaic floor was a swastika, which, before its use by the Nazis, was a common icon. Unlike the Nazi swastika, however, the arms on this example run counter-clockwise