Past Exhibitions

Synagogenbauten in Polen

11/13/2008 – 03/02/2009

Wojciech Wilczyk, “Czy tu byla synagoga?”

Yeckes: German Speaking Jews in Israel

10/13/2008 – 12/30/2008

An exhibition on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the State of Israel. From the Museum of German-Speaking Jews – Cultural Center of the Jeckes, Tefen, Israel and the New Synagogue Berlin – Centrum Judaicum Foundation.

The Yeckes, German-speaking immigrants who came to the British Mandate of Palestine during the years 1933-1939 as refugees from Nazi Germany, played a fundamental role in building the state of Israel as a modern democracy. Many came not because they believed strongly in Zionism; in fact, the opposite was often true. Sometimes they were mocked because they came from Germany. They had middle-class professions – they were doctors, teachers, civil servants, lawyers, and architects. Now they had to start anew, often unable to continue working in the professions for which they had studied, in order to make a living for themselves and their families. Still, they brought with them to the Land of Israel their experiences, education, and the culture of the Weimar Republic. Together with others they laid the foundation for a Jewish State: in economics and public administration, in the legal system, in architecture, in medicine and in art.

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“It´s Burning!”

08/16/2008 – 01/02/2009

Anti-Jewish Terror in November 1938

2008 is the 70th anniversary of the anti-Jewish terror ignited by the Nazis in November 1938. From November 6, 2008 on, this exhibition will present little-known photographs from 1938 and 1939. Among them are those that were used as proof in the post-war judicial proceedings. They illustrate the significance of violence and public humiliation of Jews in the German Reich. The exhibition also refers back to the room in which it is shown. The entrance hall of the New Synagogue was a place for the worshippers to exchange greetings and chat before and after services. The exhibition makes – in a non-literal sense – their voices once again audible: Audio-stations present early biographical witnesses to the experiences of German Jews in November 1938.

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Silenced Voices

05/18/2008 – 07/04/2008

The National Opera Unter den Linden and the Foundation for the New Synagogue Berlin – Centrum Judaicum present an exhibition on the expulsion of Jewish and ‘foreign’ artists from the Opera between 1933 and 1945. From May 18 – July 4, 2008 the National Opera Unter den Linden, together with the Centrum Judaicum and Against Forgetting – For Democracy e.V., presents the exhibition “Silenced Voices: the Expulsion of the ‘Jews’ out of the Opera between 1933 and 1945.”

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Between Staying and Going

Jews in East Germany between 1945 and 1956 – Ten BiographiesThe few surviving Jews who ended up in Germany’s post-war Soviet occupation zone and in the Soviet sector of Berlin were caught, shortly after their liberation, between the fronts of the Cold War. The fact that they were survivors of Nazi persecution was often met with mistrust. They were perceived, due to their demands for compensation, their activism for the State of Israel, and their ‘bourgeois’ (in the eyes of the Soviet occupiers and the SED-Leadership) way of life, as foreign or even ‘enemy elements’. With the division of Germany and Stalin’s purges in Eastern Europe, which culminated in anti-Semitic criminal proceedings, it was not only the Communists of Jewish heritage who became the targets of particular hostility. The Jewish communities were seen more and more frequently as centers of western or Israeli agents. Community members as well as Jewish Communists were kept under surveillance by the Stasi as ‘Jewish Nationalists’. With the flight of hundreds of Jews out of the GDR at the beginning of 1953, the Jewish communities of the GDR lost a large part of their autonomy. The exhibition documents, with the help of the stories of ten individuals, the spectrum of political repression in East Germany which, in the context of the Cold War, served massive anti-Jewish prejudices.

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Forced Labor and the NDH (Nezavisna Država Hrvatska – Independent State of Croatia) 1941-1945

12/13/2007 – 03/16/2008

Exhibition on forced labor under the ‘Independent State of Croatia’ in Croatia and Bosnia.

Some 220,000 people from Croatia and Bosnia – Jews and non-Jews alike – were made to perform forced labor during the Second World War. Croatians, Germans, Austrians, and Serbians created a forced labor network which generally resulted in the death of its victims.

The Centrum Judaicum presents this exhibition in collaboration with the Historical Office ‘Culture and More’ Munich, the Croatian National Archive, and the Organization of Anti-Fascists (both from Zagreb). Never-seen-before photos, documents, and interviews with witnesses are shown as part of the exhibition.

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Where is Lvov?

10/01/2007 – 05/30/2008

Lvov, Lemberg, Lviv – for centuries people of different cultures and ethnicities lived together in this city, mostly in peace. This city, on the threshold between East and West, was an important center of European Judaism, often a haven for those fleeing anti-Semitic persecution, or the confinement of the Galician Shtetl. Jewish culture could develop here outside of ghettoization and exclusion – until the Second World War and Nazism brutally brought this lively and incredibly active city to its end.

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Hermann Struck

5/30/2007 – 08/12/2007

Berlin artist and early Zionist

The Berlin artist Hermann Struck was a unique figure in both Germany and the Land of Israel. He became well-known through his etchings of well-known Jewish faces, his portraits, and his landscapes. At the same time the Berlin Jew Hermann Struck was a Zionist from the beginning.

In 1903 – on a return journey from the Land of Israel – he drew a portrait of Theodore Herzl, who would become an icon of Zionism. Hermann Struck was a German officer in the First World War and created hundreds of lithographs, mostly of the daily life of Eastern European Jews.

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Between the Soviet Star and the Star of David

11/15/2006 – 12/30/2006

Jewish veterans of the Red Army in the Second World War and today in Berlin.
Historians and students of four Berlin high schools (Canisius-Kolleg, Jüdische Oberschule, Evangelisches Gymnasium zum Grauen Kloster, Gottfried-Keller-Gymnasium) interviewed together thirteen Red Army veterans about their lives. The Interviews as well as the participants’ photographs and documents provide the foundation for a small exhibition that was created by this group.

Kickers, Warriors and Legends

09/13/2006 – 12/17/2006

They were pioneers of German Soccer. Jewish soccer players, trainers, journalists, and officials made soccer popular in Germany. They were cheered on, honoured, and respected. They were role models in the sense of the sport’s idea of fair play. Their revolutionary ideas and methods set new standards, which at that time were denounced by those more narrow-minded and nationalistic.

Their successful careers suddenly ended in 1933. Up until November 10, 1938, Jews were only allowed to play on Jewish sports teams. Afterwards Jews were forbidden to take part in any athletic activities, and the athletes shared the fates of all other European Jews. Since the end of the Second World War, Jews have not played a comparable role in German soccer. Their merit was displaced and forgotten. The Centrum Judaicum wants with the exhibition ‘Kickers, Warriors, and Legends’ to bring this chapter of German soccer history back into the common memory.

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