A queue snaking down north London’s Finchley Road is an unusual sight, as are people on stilts, musicians and ice cream vendors. But JW3, London’s new Jewish community centre, finally opened its doors on September 29 to a crowd that may have represented an unprecedented representation of the community. On the first of two launch days designed to entice and give a flavor of what is on offer in its first season, the place teemed with activity and curiosity, amidst an air of slight organizational chaos.
A new Amy Winehouse exhibit is an intimate and affectionate portrayal of the self-destructive soul singer who grew up in Jewish north London.
“London seems to be in my bloodstream,” said artist Leon Kossoff. “It is always moving — the skies, the streets, the buildings. The people who walk past me when I draw have become part of my life.”
The story of five gay, cross-dressing Filipino migrants in cosmopolitan Tel Aviv who work by day as caretakers for elderly Hasidic men and by night transform into a musical drag act, might seem improbable. But it is a true story. Based on Tomer Heymann’s award-winning 2006 documentary of the same name, the world premiere of “Paper Dolls,” a play with music, is currently showing at the innovative Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn, north London.
At the end of this month, selections of work from the exhibit “R.B. Kitaj (1932-2007): Obsessions” will be transferring from its successful run at the Jewish Museum Berlin to two venues in the U.K. It will exhibit concurrently at Pallant House Gallery in Chichester and the Jewish Museum London, before returning to Germany. Both British institutions have links with the artist. M.J. Long, the architect whose practice was responsible for the refurbishment of the Jewish Museum as well as the extensions to Pallant House, also designed Kitaj’s London studio.
Many Jewish refugees from the Nazis were tapped for an all-important wartime role. They listened in on German prisoners’ jailhouse chats in hopes of gleaning military clues.
Pioneering feminist artist Judy Chicago is not for the prudish. Yet gorgeous gems are nestled alongside shocking images in her new London Jewish Museum show.
Set in an unnamed village in the Negev desert, Ami Livne’s low budget directorial debut, “Sharqiya,” tells the story of a Bedouin family whose home is served a demolition order by Israeli authorities. The film won the 2012 Jerusalem Film Festival’s Haggiag Award for best feature film, screened this month at the U.K. Jewish Film Festival and will make its American premiere November 8 at Manhattan’s Other Israel Film Festival.
Outside the entrance to London South Bank University’s (LSBU) Southwark campus (previously known as Borough College), a crest of arms sits below an ornate art deco glass window with the inscription, “Do It With Thy Might.” The insignia has a contemporary resonance; in June the building became home to the Borough Road Gallery, housing the first permanent exhibition dedicated to the British artist David Bomberg and five of his former students.