- The Foreign Ministry’s invitation for the J.M.G. to be included in the Greek delegation participating in the international organization “Holocaust Forum on Nazi Era Looted Cultural Assets” along with 36 other countries, on 3rd- 5th October 2000 at Vilnius in Lithuania was an event of particular significance. The aim of the conference was to examine this huge subject with all its historic, social and legal ramifications. The J.M.G. undertook the organization of the standand the production of the official poster for the Greek delegation. The stand housed a synoptic exhibition of photographs from the Museum archives, which supplemented the subject matter covered by speakers at the Conferenc eby drawing attention to the magnitude of the lossand the barbarity of the cultural degradation which the Jewish communities of Greece suffered under Nazi occupation. The Greek stand also had informative and historical printed matter related to the subject of the Conference and the work of the Jewish Museum. The Conference put forward the question of locating and securing the return of looted property and the legal aspects of a European legislative framework. Finally, the participating countries signed a joint proclamation.
- On 8th and 9th June, the Museum hosted the 3rd meeting of the partners in the OIKOS II European programme which it has participated in since March 1999. The J.M.G., the Oxfordshire Museum in England and the Sebutal Museum in Portugal are working on the production of a CD ROM and touring exhibition on the co-existence and exchange between a large community and smaller religious communities or social groups it hosts. The meeting was particularly constructive and the programme is expected to be completed by autumn 2000.
- The Museum also took part in the International Conference on Judeo-Espaniol. A language in search of its people, organized by the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki on 16th and 17th April. A few days later a group of conference participants accompanied by Ms. Rena Molho, visited the J.M.G. and were given a guided tour of the exhibition.
- On 26th to 28th March the J.M.G. took part in the General Meeting of the Association of European Jewish Museums, which was organized by the Jewish Museum of Prague. The topics covered by the participating museum directors and curators were the organization of the Association, co-operation and exchange of information among members, the validation of collections and the setting up of a web page for the Association on the Internet. During the conference there was a slide presentation of the J.M.G.’s new building and exhibition areas, which those present commented on eagerly and positively. Before the proceedings were brought to a close elections were held for the Association’s new, five-members Board of Directors. The J.M.G. was elected and its first act as a new member was to invite the Board of Directors to hold the next conference in Athens.
- THE MUSEUM’S PARTICIPATION IN THE STOCKHOLM, INTERNATIONAL FORUM ON THE HOLOCAUST
The International Conference – Forum – on The Holocaust: Education, Remembrance and Research, a Swedish Government initiative, took place in Stockholm on 26th to 28th January. Official delegations from 46 countries took part in the Conference, which had a total of 700 participants including Heads of State, Prime Ministers and ministers, but also representatives of non-governmental organizations, international Jewish organizations and academics, historians, teachers and authorities on the Holocaust. The aim of the Forum was to provide opportunities for discussion and co-operation on the promotion of international educational initiatives on the Holocaust with the long-term aim of combating racism and anti-Semitism which go hand in hand with ignorance of the past. An official Greek delegation headed by the Foreign Minister, George Papandreou, also took part in the Conference, and our Museum was invited to undertake the Greek stand. Not only was this invitation an honour, but it was also a marvellous opportunity for the Jewish Museum of Greece to present its work and activities to an international audience, as well as acquaint them with its role in maintaining the history and memory of the Holocaust. Beginning with the Greek Delegation participation poster, which was designed by our Museum, the staff of the Jewish Museum of Greece took charge of the whole organization, presentation and operation of the Greek stand, which welcomed a host of foreign visitors and received many favourable comments. The material the Museum presented in Stockholm featured the exhibition of photographs of the Greek Jews’ Holocaust, the Museum area and educational programmes on the Shoah, printed historical material, printed information about the Museum and its activities as well as material from the periodic exhibitions of contemporary art on the subject of the Holocaust which the Museum has presented. Visitors to the Greek stand were taken on a tour of the museum through a short video presentation of its premises and collections. A computer was placed at the visitor’s disposal, to complement his acquaintance with the Museum through our web page. The stand also included interesting material from the Historical Archives of the Foreign Ministry and from the George Papandreou Foundation. Our Museum’s participation in the Stockholm International Conference, not only promoted its work and activities on the theme of the Holocaust and the teaching of its history, it also demonstrated the Museum’s ability to participate in international events and play a significant role in meeting the new challenges our country faces in the multi-cultural environment of the European Union. The experience also proved of manifold significance as a series of international contacts has led to new joint projects and prospects in which our Museum’s historical, educational and photographic material will form the basis for events focusing on the Holocaust.