19″ x 25″
Pencil signed and numbered lithograph “Joseph’s Coat” is a limited edition of 500 pieces.
Unframed – $190.00 plus S&H.
The Story of Joseph
Within the design of a robe styled coat, panel by panel the entire story of Joseph’s life is pictured. Each chapter is illustrated in a brilliant array of colors. Loebman uses tremendous symbols as well as hieroglyphic characters to convey the story of Joseph. Each fine detail is paid close attention to from the tents of Jacob where Joseph was born, to the drop of blood representing when Joseph’s brothers dipped his coat in animal blood. Each number below refers to a band on the coat, with the number 1 starting in the upper left:
1. Joseph was born in ‘the tents of Jacob’. As a young boy, he was a shepherd.
2. The first of Joseph’s two dreams: His brother’s sheaves bow down to his.
3. The second dream: 11 stars, the sun and moon bow down to Joseph’s star. The sun represents Jacob, and the moon represents Rachel ( or Bilah).
4. Joseph’s brothers dislike his arrogance, and throw him into a pit. The wolf represents the wild animal which his brothers told Jacob had allegedly devoured Joseph.
5. Not knowing what to do with Joseph, his brothers sell him to passing Ishmaelite traders for twenty pieces of silver.
6. According to the legends, the brothers used these twenty silver pieces to buy twenty pairs of shoes.
7. The Ishmaelites who took Joseph, had 7 camels. The squiggly line is hieroglyphics for ‘going to a foreign land’.
8. Joseph was taken to Egypt and sold into slavery.
9. The brothers dipped Joseph’s coat in blood, and gave it to Jacob explaining to him that Joseph had been attacked by a wild animal.
10. According to Jewish custom, when a family member passes away, one must rip their clothing. Also, when Reuben found out that Joseph was sold, for he had not been there at the time, he “rent” his clothes.
11. Joseph was bought by Potiphar. Hieroglyphics for ‘a courtier of the king’.
12. Ancient Hebrew for Potiphar.
13. The circle is the symbol for the sun god, Ra. This is also the symbol for Potiphar’s wife, Zuleika. Zuleika, in tempting Joseph, ripped his clothing in order to frame him for not lying with her.
14. Joseph was then thrown in prison, where he stayed for 10 years before hearing the dreams of Pharaoh’s servants. Here, you see 10 bars that also represent the 10 brothers that sold Joseph to the Midianites.
15. The Chief Cupbearer’s dream: The legends tell that the three branches represent the three Patriarchs: Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Since the Cupbearer was pardoned, they also represent the future: Moses, Aaron and Miriam, whose names appear next to the branches.
16. The Baker’s dream: Since the Baker was to be killed, his three baskets of food represent the three empires that would one day conquer the Israelites: The Babylonians, the Midianites and the Assyrians.
17. Having heard of Joseph’s talents, the Pharaoh calls for him: Hieroglyphics for ‘being called before the king’.
18. Legend states that there were 72 steps to Pharaoh’s throne. A person’s rank decided how many steps he would ascend and how many steps Pharaoh would come down to meet him. Since Joseph was a slave he was only permitted to go up 3 steps, while Pharaoh only came down 4 steps. Here, each step is represented by a square with Pharaoh starting at the top right, and Joseph at the bottom left.
19. The first of Pharaoh’s two dreams: Seven gaunt cows came out of the Nile and ate the seven sturdy cows.
20. In Pharaoh’s second dream, seven scorched ears of grain swallowed up seven full ears.
21. For his correct interpretation of the dreams (there would be seven years of plenty followed by seven years of drought), Pharaoh put Joseph in charge of all the land of Egypt. He gave Joseph his signet ring and a gold chain for his neck.
22. Joseph gathered all the grain for the next seven years. During this time, he was married and had two sons: Menasheh and Ephraim.
23. These seven colorful bands represent the seven years of plenty.
24. These seven brown bands represent the seven years of famine.
25. During the famine, Jacob sent his remaining sons, excluding Benjamin, to Egypt to buy grain. He told them to enter the city from different gates, so that the inhabitants would not think that they were attacking. Here, we see the city with the ten different gates. One for each brother.
26. Joseph found the brothers and had them brought before him. Here, Joseph is represented by the Hebrew letter ‘Yud’, in the upper left. The brothers are represented by the first letters of their names.
27. Joseph sent his brothers home with bags of grain hiding their money in the sacks. Before doing this, he bound Simeon, told the other brothers to bring back Benjamin and ‘he turned away from them and wept’.
28. The brothers returned with Benjamin, and Joseph invited them for a meal. Here, the table is set. The ten brothers sat at one table, while Joseph and Benjamin sat at another. Benjamin was served four portions to the other brothers one.
29. Joseph sent the brothers on their way with more grain, but hid his goblet in Benjamin’s sack. Once they were gone, Joseph sent the guards to retrieve the stolen goblet.
30. Now Joseph’s earlier dream comes true, as his eleven brothers (represented by the stars) bow down to him.
31. Joseph accuses Benjamin of the theft, and Judah comes to his defense. Judah; represented as the lion, and Joseph; represented as the bull, argue back and forth until Joseph is convinced that his brothers have changed, and would be willing to protect Benjamin.
32. At this point, Pharaoh invites Jacob (the sun), the brothers and all the children of the House of Israel, numbering 70 (the stars), to come live in Egypt.
33. Each of the twelve colored boxes represents one of the twelve tribes of Israel that descended from the twelve brothers.