Back to the past

June 29, 2020 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Sydney’s Jewish Museum will reopen its doors on Wednesday following its COVID shutdown.

After more than three months of closure, the Sydney Jewish Museum will reopen its exhibitions to the public on Wednesdays and Sundays.

The reopening of the Sydney Jewish Museum comes at a time when Holocaust survivors have experienced many weeks of isolation, including their ability to tell their stories to adults and students within the Museum. It also coincides with a tumultuous time in the world, where social justice and anti-racial policy are at the fore of public conversation, both overseas and here in Australia.

Through its exhibitions on the Holocaust and human rights, the Museum takes lessons from history and the testimonies of Holocaust survivors and witnesses to warn against systemic racism, prejudice, and inspire greater respect, empathy and individual responsibility to effect positive change.

Norman Seligman, Chief Executive Officer of the Sydney Jewish Museum, expresses the hope that with the doors of the Museum now open again, the public will come and learn the lessons from one of humanity’s darkest moments and use these messages to start conversations about human rights in Australia.

The reopening of the Museum will also allow visitors to experience two new exhibitions which highlight the lesser-told stories of Jewish people from the Middle East, Asia Minor, North Africa and the Iberian Peninsula who made their way to Australia. Until the 15th century, most Jews lived in Islamic lands.

Jews from Islamic Lands tells a tapestry of stories about Jews from these regions, touching on experiences of tolerance, flourishing, expulsion and displacement, as well as how these communities have kept their traditions and connections to their homelands alive in their dispersion.

Nostalgic Glimpses of a Bygone Era is an exhibition of paintings by Camille Fox, a Jewish artist who was born in the “golden era” in Alexandria, Egypt. The artist sees herself as a storyteller, conceiving stories through a lens of good memories of this bygone time.

The Sydney Jewish Museum will open to the public on Wednesday 1 July, and will initially open on Wednesdays (10am-4pm) and Sundays (10am-4pm). A limit of 80 people in the Museum will be enforced, along with other safety measures in line with NSW Government guidelines.

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