President Shimon Peres was treated to an unusual early birthday gift Thursday when he flew over a field that had an impression of his face etched in the wheat.
Peres was flying by helicopter to an annual state memorial service for Zionist hero Joseph Trumpeldor. As the aircraft flew over the fields of Kibbutz Tel Yosef, the pilot pointed out the enormous work of art.
“I plowed the fields and now I am plowed in them,” Peres remarked as the helicopter banked over the field to give him a better view. “This is to go back to one’s roots.”
The portrait is the work of Peter Weiner, commissioned by Kibbutz Tel Yosef to mark Peres’s 90th birthday, which is coming up on August 2. Covering 250 dunams (62.5 acres), the etching is the largest ever completed in Israel.
In order to complete the artwork, Weiner, who specializes in field sketches, used a tractor to chemically deplete the wheat stalks and render a much-larger-than-life representation of the president’s visage.
“It is a great honor for me to make the image of the president in such a special and unusual way,” Weiner and added that it took “many hours” to make.
The portrait is available for viewing throughout the day, no entrance fee required. Bring your own helicopter.