Activities 2015

On Wednesday 25th November 2015 a music concert on Sephardic songs from Constantinople, Thessaloniki and Smyrna took place at the Cervantes Institute. The event was connected with David Benforado’s current exhibition “Between Sound and Silence” that was inaugurated on 21 October 2015 at the Jewish Museum of Greece.

On Sunday 22nd November 2015, the travelling version of the exhibition Synagonistis: Greek Jews in the National Resistance was inaugurated at Museum of the City of Volos.

On Wednesday 21st October 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece inaugurated the temporary exhibition “Between Sound and Silence” by the painter David Benforado at its contemporary art gallery. The exhibition is carried out in collaboration with Kourd Gallery and with the support of a grant from the European Association for Jewish Culture. The exhibition run until 11 January 2016.

On Wednesday October 14th 2015, the documentary film «Carl Lutz, the forgotten hero» by Daniel von Aarburg, was screened at Cervantes Institution. The event was realized in collaboration with the Embassy of Switzerland.

For more information about the film, kindly follow the link.

On Thursday, October 1st 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece hosted the opening of the exhibition “Synagogues of East-Central Europe, 1782-1944”, that was realized in the framework of the Hungarian Chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).

On Friday 22nd May 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece hosted the event “Solidarity Sabbath”, a movement to reaffirm the world’s commitment to the most fundamental of human rights – the freedom of religion, conscience, and belief.

On Wednesday 20th May 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece in collaboration with the Magaron Plus, organized a debate on “Holocaust and Education”. An international panel of three scholars examined the history and current state of holocaust education in Greece, Europe and the rest of the world. Paul Salmons, Programme Director, Centre for Holocaust Education, UCL Institute of Education, University College London, Dr. Thomas Lutz, Head of the Memorial Museums Department, Topography of Terror Foundation, Berlin and Dr. Vasiliki Sakka, Education School Consultant discussed the subject giving particular emphasis on its value and importance in reinforcing the democratic process and social awareness, and on the combating of violent racist and anti-Semitic phenomena – once again on the rise. Co-ordinator of the discussion was Ms. Margarita Pournara, journalist.

On Monday 18th May 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece in cooperation with the Hellenic American Union Hellenic American College (HAEC), presented Iossif Ventura’s new poetry book in its first bilingual edition published in the United States by Red Heifer Press. In his two poetry books that have been published in Greece, Tanaïs (Gavrielides Books, 2001) and Kyclonio (Melani Publications, 2010), Iossif Ventura returns to the terrible historic event of the extermination in the Nazi concentration camps of the Jews in Europe and particularly those living in Greece. Red Heifer Press’ edition presented at the Hellenic American Union is the first bilingual publication of Tanaïs & Kyklonio, in which the original Greek is accompanied by a powerful English translation that is the collaborative effort of several distinguished poets and scholars. Anna Despotopoulou (Assistant Professor, University of Athens), Helen Dimos (Philologist, Translator, Poet), Adrianne Kalfopoulou (Faculty Member, Hellenic American University / Hellenic American College, poet) and Liana Sakelliou (Professor, University of Athens, poet), spoke about the book. Music was performed by: Daniella Soussi (cello) and Penny-Sue Joyce (piano).

The Jewish Museum of Greece participated in the International Museum Day on Monday 18th May 2015, offering free admission and special tours and programmes. More than 40 people attended the tour.

On Monday 11th May 2015 the new temporary art exhibition by Christina Mitrentse, entitled RE/SPOND/INVENTCREATE was inaugurated at the premises of the Jewish Museum of Greece. Visitors that attended the event, found the game of discovering the works of art between the artefacts of the Museum’s permanent collection very creative. They also participated with great interest in the live performance Metalibrary that took place at the lower level of the Museum. Those that had already brought a book with them gave it to the artist, who placed it in the specially designed grid, to create the installation. The books remained at the museum until the end of the exhibition, on 11th September 2015.

On Tuesday 21st April 2015, the travelling exhibition of the Jewish Museum of Greece, “SYNAGONISTIS: Greek Jews in the National Resistance” was successfully inaugurated in the Washington Hebrew Congregation, Washington DC. The Greek Foreign Minister, Mr. N. Kotzias, attended the event together with more than 150 important guests. The exhibition, originating from the Jewish Museum of Greece and presented by the Embassy of Greece, aims to honor the contribution of the Greek Jewish fighters to the struggle against the Nazis in occupied Greece, as well as dispute the theory that all Jews succumbed to the Holocaust like “lambs to the slaughter.” “Synagonistis” is presented in Washington, D.C. by the Embassy of Greece with the generous contribution of the Secretariat General of Communication of Greece and the kind support of the American Hellenic Institute, AHEPA, B’nai B’rith International, the American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece and the Black Olive Restaurant.

On March 19th 2015, the Jewish Museum of Greece (JMG) and the American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece (AFJMG) hosted a program and reception at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in Manhattan. The event was held under the auspices of The Consulate General of Greece in New York and in collaboration with The Hellenic-American Chamber of Commerce. The program was planned as the official launch of the JMG Guidebook in the United States and to posthumously honor JMG past President and founding member Sam Benrubi.  The event was attended by the Greek community and members of the AFJMG, as well as a lot of interested new friends.

On Tuesday, 3rd March 2015, , the Jewish Museum of Greece in collaboration with the Magaron Plus, organized a debate on “Holocaust and Memory”. An international panel of three scholars examined the phenomenon of the Holocaust in Europe and Greece, its genesis in anti-Semitism and the current situation. There was also discussion of the issue of the maturing of memory, and the policies of commemoration in the past and present. Annette Wieviorka, Historian, Emeritus Research Director at CNRS (IRICE, Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne), Mark Weitzman, Director of Government Affairs, Simon Wiesenthal Center, Chair of the Committee on Holocaust Denial and Antisemitism, International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) and Odette Varon-Vassar, Historian, Professor at the Hellenic Open University discussed the subject.

On Thursday 26 February 2015, in the framework of the proceedings of the 14th seminar of the J.M.G. “Teaching about the Holocaust in Greece”, was launched the book “A Narrative of Evil: Lisa Pinhas Confronts the Holocaust”. Historian Odette Varon-Vassard, psychoanalyst Ariella Asher and author Savvas Michail spoke at the launch of the memoirs, written by Holocaust survivor Lisa Pinhas, which the JMG have published in Greek and English. The three presentations revolved around questions of great historical and pedagogical value concerning individual and collective memory, duty and the transformation of trauma in the historical narrative.

For the commemoration of the National Day of Remembrance for Victims and Heroes of the Holocaust, set by the Greek Parliament on the 27th January 2015 every year, the Jewish Museum of Greece, offered for free, a series of activities and educational programs for the visitors.