12. September 2022
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Jewish museums matter!

by Barbara Staudinger
© Titelsujet „Ausgestopfte Juden?“ Diese Leuchtreklame ist eine Reproduktion, die mit Genehmigung des Capital Jewish Museum, Washington, D.C., angefertigt wurde. Das Original ist ein Geschenk von Andrea Choobineh und Ricky Moskowitz.
Congratulations to the Jewish Museum Hohenems, which has received this year’s Austrian Museum Prize!
Hanno Loewy and his team have shown how Jewish museums can be relevant when they get involved, take up socio-political issues and develop them further. This not only requires a sympathetic ear, but also a good sense for what moves us today and what will move us tomorrow. And one needs to know how to implement all of this into museum exhibitions: with stories, objects and through art.
Exhibitions like Say Shibboleth! Of Visible and Invisible Borders have underscored how to address international issues with a local reference, while End of Testimony? simultaneously looked to the past and the future, asking how we remember. Exhibitions on Jerusalem and Tel Aviv offered surprises and revealed new perspectives on these much-discussed cities. Exhibitions on the First Europeans and Last Europeans have shown the European idea from a minority perspective, whereas the exhibition The Female Side of God turned everything we thought we knew upside down.
With this in mind, we at the Jewish Museum Vienna congratulate all our colleagues in the far west of Austria – we want to compete with you and are still a family, nonetheless.

Incidentally, the Jewish Museum Hohenems is currently featuring an exhibition curated by Felicitas Heimann-Jelinek and Hannes Sulzenbacher called “Taxidermied Jews?” History, Present, and Future of Jewish Museums.