Rick Wienecke was born in Toronto Canada in 1955. When he was twenty years old, he read the book “Exodus” by Leon Uris that introduced him, for the first time, to the Holocaust, and to the struggle of the Jewish people to have a nation of their own. This was at a time in his life that he was searching for God and he became more and more convinced, that if there is a God, He must have something to do with these Jews and this country Israel; “How could they (the Jewish people) survive the Holocaust and only three years later declare themselves as a nation?”
Rick felt an inner stirring to go and see Israel for himself. In 1977 he left Canada, with the plan to work on a kibbutz as a volunteer for six months.
The plan changed, however, and Kibbutz Ramat Hakovesh became home for the next 7 years. Rick would say that his time on the Kibbutz began everything for him. He became a believer in Jesus, he started to sculpt, he was given permanent residency, and then, after doing his time in the army, he received full citizenship. This for Rick was a clear sign from God that he was to stay in Israel. He married Dafna and they have two sons.
In order to work as an artist full-time, Rick and Dafna had to make a hard decision to leave the kibbutz. For over 40 years, they have continued to live and sculpt in Israel. They now live in Arad in the south of Israel.
His works can be seen around the world. His greatest creation is a wall 20 meters long by 4 meters high combining stone and bronze called “The Fountain of Tears” which expresses a dialogue of suffering between the Holocaust and the crusifixion of Jesus. The exhibition is on display at the sculptor’s home in Arad, as well as it’s reproduction 300 meters from the gates of Birkenau in Southern Poland.