“Welcome to Jerusalem” at the Jewish Museum Berlin is a robustly curated tour through a city “saturated with prayers and dreams.”
Photo: Monika Rittershaus
What does it mean to reduce the contemporary Jewish experience to a series of quotes, objects and stereotypes, and to conclude an exhibit by placing a live human in a glass box to answer the questions of museum-goers? On March 22, Jews gathered across the world to observe the start of the Passover holiday, recalling our central narrative of what it means to move from slavery to liberation. On the same day, the Jewish Museum Berlin opened an exhibition promising to “showcase Jews,” hoping to create a space for dialogue. The show, entitled “The Whole Truth…everything you always wanted to know about Jews,” runs through September 1, 2013. The timing of this exhibition takes on a new level of irony ⎯ liberation seems to have taken holiday in Germany!
Daniel Libeskind’s ‘Wheel of Conscience’ in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Courtesy Canadian Jewish Congress.
In honor of the Argentine bicentennial, and the country’s position as guest of honor at the upcoming Frankfurt Book Fair, the Jewish Museum Berlin has turned over several of its rooms to “Jewish Life in Argentina,” a special exhibition that functions as a living archive of the community’s 150-year-old history, as well as a quiet acknowledgment of Germany’s involvement in it.
Anyone traveling through Germany this month has until June 27 to see a landmark exhibit at the Jewish Museum Berlin, “Flight and Metamorphosis: Nelly Sachs, Writer, Berlin/Stockholm.” The exhibit, which opened March 25, pays homage to Nelly Sachs, the only German-language poet ever given the Nobel Prize. In 1966, Sachs shared the Nobel with Israeli author Shmuel Yosef Agnon, in what the Nobel Committee termed an award to “Jewish” writers.