A Tribute to Judith :

Words from Friends


Judith's Song

by Pashen F. Carter

I was a timid little girl from the big city when Judith and I first met
A frightened teary eyed child, a memory I'll never forget
Judith embraced me as any loving parent would
She told me it was okay to be afraid, she understood

I found comfort in her arms when I'd cry at night
Her loving tenderness soothed me and made everything alright
When others took particles of my heart to use for target practice
Judith gave me a chunk of hers to replace it with

I'm fortunate, grateful, and elated
Proud to have had her as part of my life

I will mourn and miss Judith's physical presence
But I will live each day
Admiring her strength, courage, and perseverance



Judith Hurwitz

I met her summer of 2004 at Omega Institute where she had been coming as artist-in-residence for some years but this was my first time there as staff. How fortunate we all were to be with her... She most certainly had a powerful impact on me and my relationship to my art as well as my outlook on life.

I was only one of so many seasonal staff who were so fortunate to enjoy the pleasure of this warm, loving and so giving of a woman with all her many talents...

I have reflected so many times on the events that surrounded Judith and the many off-shoots of her very special being. It has been as though she gave me a video that captured all that she was about there. Since last summer, I have played it many times for myself in my mind and it is always such a sweet and peaceful escapism. A little trip into utopia, where a most warm and welcoming woman is inside or sitting in a chair on the porch of the Art Hut. How heavenly is that?

She is ever so approachable on any subject at all and no matter who you are she invites you inside to express yourself with the array of various mediums and so gently and easily leads the way to mediums we most likely would never have thought of in our creative attempts at expression. She certainly instilled a sense of holisticness into the artist. What a gift in-and-of-itself that she possessed...that she could be so generous exercising this talent with her teaching and unique way of directing.

When I play this video, I see a warm soft glow around the sweet soft red hairs of Judith's head; she is often getting about on an electric scooter (she must be using because of some pain and discomfort but she never complains nor looks the part); she is smiling and enjoying every minute; She is walking into the staff dinning hall smiling and recruiting reciprocated smiles as she approaches staff table-to-table, engaging in personal conversations and inviting everyone into conversation; she listens so well to everyone with sincere interest and yet causes a welcomed lightness to anything with heavy overtones; she so easily laughs and brings just the right amount of infectiousness with it that a joy and lightness is spread; she extends such a warm welcome to each of us to come enjoy play in the Art Hut indulging in all the wonderful art supplies; she opens up our horizons for possibilities in our creativity.

I have some specific memories of Judith from last summer that I am happy to share.

I recall special attention she gave to a young boy, son of a staff member, an obviously lonely and bored child. He had been hanging out at the Art Hut, just bored. Judith discovered he had an interest in the sewing machine there. With her super nurturing way and intuitiveness she worked one-on-one with him...and was soon skillfully at work on this boy. She helped him discover his interest in making his own tote/carry-on bag. Her time with him evolved into the mechanisms of design, fabric choice, function and of course mechanics of the sewing machine and most of all, the pay-off from having patience. The finished piece: a really fine, handsome looking black sturdy shoulder bag, masculine enough with extra grommets on it. It was a pleasing sight to see this boy sporting the bag on his shoulder, taking so much pride in his accomplishment that Judith was with him on through the entire process of its creation.

I was really taken by seeing her intuitiveness I witnessed as she went about her art therapy work. I remember telling Art then, "She is amazing! the gift she is giving this boy with her attention of such quality, will be with him all his life." I wondered if she knew herself what all she had done for him, to have left him with a most positive impression of women, how to spend quality time no matter where you are or what age group you are amongst. What a gift she was giving him.

It was not uncommon to see Judith fussing in the art hut till late hours. She was just so devoted to her work, so caring of the space and everyone's individual work pieces. She promoted 'community' with interactive creative happenings...She promoted inclusion for all, and with her effective way of reaching everyone, got so many to not just get involved but 'feel' part-of.

Among some of the extra nice things she would do for us, was to take time to mount and hang our art with such care, not just in gallery fashion at the Art Hut but in the staff dinning hall as well.

The Group Mural was on a mega size wall in the Art Hut that she made available for all seasonal staff to come participate in. She not only put many hours into the extensive prep work to make ready the wall for this project, she also kept the group mural going till about 3:00 in the morning which included she was present for all of those hours. Plus, she made sure it was left up for days, available for everyone's enjoyment or even continued participation for whenever. The group mural was more than popular, it was owned by all, invested in and very effective on many levels.

What an impact Judith had on so many and how greatly she will be missed.

As an artist myself, I am grateful for the journey Judith took me on with creativity and thankful for this video of memories I have from her time with us that allows me to revisit her spirit. A blessing.

Thank you Judith for this Blessing and thank you for your being,

--- Pat Laviana


When we first met her, she was Judy and then Judith she became.
As they say, a rose by any other name is the same.

From Goddard to Omega to Plattsburgh to Centerport
She made her mark and was always a good sport.

She always accepted people for what they were.
Never tried to change them or make them like her.

When she visited and I was having a bad day,
She would massage my feet to help make the pain go away.

"Shmucks in shorts" we named Arthur and Mel
For wearing shorts when it was as cold as hell.

Loving, caring, artistic and such
Family, friends, being nice to people meant so much.

She adored her husband Arthur, and was a great wife.
Her pride and love in Tina, Lonie, David and later Joel enriched her life.

Michael and Adam, the wonderful Grandboys
Who even taught her some of the Sabbath joys.

Judith, we'll always fondly remember you
And go on living and loving as you would have wanted us to.


--- Barbara Lichtig,  March 13, 2005

omega dedication[ Omega Dedication ]
obit[ Judiths Obituary ]
bio[ Artist Bio ]
Blue Orb Design's Gallery of Artisits[ Main Gallery Index ]
Background photo is Judith on the trapeeze.

Thank you to our friends who contributed to this page.

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