In the establishment of Bezalel two separate concepts regarding the future prospects of the Jewish people converged. On the one hand there was the will to define and create national art and the belief in the positive contribution of the arts to the development of the Jewish people. These were mainly the views held by artists and their supporters who were involved in Bezalel. On the other hand there was the urge to supply work to the Jewish community in Palestine and the will to encourage what was called ‘the productivisation of the Jews’. Primarily it was the German Jews, who supported the founding of Bezalel, that took this view. That the two tendencies did not get along together very well is evident from the constant difficulties that accompanied Bezalel from its first days. In commenting on the institution and its problems the prominent Hebrew writer Y.H.Brenner noted that what was created was merely a ‘Bezalel mess’ and none of its aims were even remotely realised.1