Radu Klapper

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Radu Klapper (14 September 1937 Bucharest Romania-30 October 2006, Tel Aviv Israel) was an Israeli-Romanian poet and author.

Radu Klapper was born in 1937 in Bucharest in a Jewish-Romanian family and grew up in a multi-linguistic environment. He studied librarianship and philology in Bucharest faculty and after completing his studies published poetry in different anthologies, and worked as an art critic in varieties newspapers in Romania. In 1976 immigrated Klapper to Israel and became a theater and dance critic in foreign magazines in Israel and France like "dance in Israel" and "Saison de la dance". He also continued to publish his poetry in different Romanian anthologies. In 1991, he started to work in the Israeli library of dance and in 1993, he became the library's director. During his time at the dance library, Klapper became known as a great supporter of artists and dancers, young and old. His vast knowledge and unique character turn Radu and the library to a pilgrimage site.

His first Hebrew poem-book "The Hart Paces" came out in 1998, and in 2003, he published two more books "Forbidden Songs" and a prose book, "Jews Against their Will", that dealt with the relationship between famous figures and their Jewish identity, among them: French singer, Barbara, the actress, Simone Signoret, the psychiatrist Bruno Bettelheim and Romain Gary. Radu's poetry often dealt with homo-erotic desire and unfulfilled love, accompanied by wisdom and sharp insight. His writings introduced into Hebrew literature a touch of European poetry.

In October 2006, at the age of 69, Radu Klaper died. After his death created the Israeli artist Shy Abady the art series "Radu" as an homage to klapper and his image. The series was first presented in January 2012 at Zadik Gallery in Jaffa and was accompanied with some events that were dedicated to the image of klapper.


Touch / Radu Klapper

I touched the Hebrew word as though touching the body of a young man I had only just met:

You can hardly see his face in the dark I read his hair with my fingertips But the secret hidden under his clothes is so foreign to me.

How many times had I to touch the silent words? How many times taste a body lacking a name?

I have fallen in love at first sight with strangers, with empty words without understanding or knowing simply because of the magic of the darkness-

The freshness of a mad forest in which only in the end do you discover the clear pool,

Of meaning

(“Touch” from Forbidden Poems, 2003 (c))

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