JEWISH MUSEUM IN PRAGUE

10.07.2009 | 13:37
JEWISH MUSEUM IN PRAGUE

NEWS – JULY 2009. Object of the month Tombstone of Rabbi Judah Loew ben Bezalel, known as the Maharal, exhibition, concerts, ...

OBJECT OF THE MONTH
Jiří Běhounek (1929–2005)
Tombstone of Rabbi Judah Loew ben Bezalel, known as the Maharal (ca. 1525–1609), and his wife Perl bat Shmuel at the Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague, 1996

The 7th of September 2009 will be the 400th anniversary of the death of an important figure in Jewish history – Rabbi Judah Loew ben Bezalel, also known as Rabbi Loew or the Maharal (the Hebrew acronym of morenu ha-rav leva – Our Teacher the Rabbi Loew). To commemorate this anniversary (yahrzeit), the Jewish Museum in Prague is preparing a unique exhibition that will be on display at the Imperial Stables of Prague Castle between the 5th of August and the 8th of November 2009. This exhibition will focus not only on the Maharal’s work and legacy, but also on the places in Prague’s former Jewish Town (in 1850 renamed Josefov in honour of the enlightened Emperor Josef II) that are associated with his life and work. One such important site is the Maharal’s grave, which is without doubt one of the main attractions of Josefov. An important scholar and spiritual authority of his day, the Maharal gained recognition for developing traditional education and is also credited with various deeds, including the creation of an artificial being – the golem. His last resting place, which he shares with his second wife Perl bat (daughter of) Shmuel, is also shrouded in legends and regarded with special esteem. This is borne out by, among other things, the countless number of kvitlach (prayer notes on small pieces of paper) that people place at his grave in the hope that their wishes will come true with the Maharal’s help. In connection with the publication of many Jewish fantasy stories from Prague at the end of the 1840s and, in particular, with the subsequent development of tourism in the 20th century, the Maharal’s tombstone became a popular motif in genre paintings and illustrations. Among the latter is this print by the prominent Czech illustrator Jiří Běhounek (1929–2005), who devoted a large part of his work to Jewish legends and fairytales (his illustrations appear, for example, in Leo Pavlát’s Osm světel [Eight Lights] and Pomsta čarodějky Simy [The Revenge of the Sorceress Simah] and Isaac Bashevis Singer’s Rabbi and the Sorceress.

JEWISH MUSEUM IN PRAGUE
drypoint on paper, 296 x 214 mm
signed and dated lower right: JB 96, artist’s proof
ŽMP 179.329

EXHIBITION IN THE ROBERT GUTTMANN GALLERY
Robert Guttmann Gallery,, Praha 1, U Staré školy 3, Praha 1, tel.: 221 711 553

JEWISH MUSEUM IN PRAGUE

The Golem
Look for the symbol or word to revive him
A tactile sculpture for drawing with light

The Golem – the famous creature that Rabbi Loew is said to have created during the reign of Rudolf II. The Jewish Museum in Prague gives everyone the opportunity to wake up their own imaginary golem. A golem hidden in a tactile sculpture by Petr Nikl. Draw with your finger, light and music.

Look for the sign or word to revive him
Imagine that the drawing board is his forehead.
First, carefully rake over the previous drawing
Or change it in some way.
Draw a face or symbol to wake him up.
Which word will you choose? How will you write it?
How will you connect to the previous drawing?
Select a drawing, letter or digit.
Choose a random or elaborate method.
A single stroke or a complex cipher.
You only have one go...
But this will become a part of a joint film – a mobile drawing
That charts all consecutive attempts...
You will become part of an animating ritual.

The exhibition is open from 4 June until 4 October 2009 every day except for Saturdays and Jewish holidays from 9 a.m. till 6 p.m.


PROGRAMME OF THE EDUCATION AND CULTURE CENTRE OF THE JMP PRAGUE AND BRNO
Education and Culture Centre of the Jewish Museum in Prague, Maiselova 15, 110 00 Praha 1, (3rd floor),
tel.: 222 325 172, fax: 222 318 856, e-mail: education@jewishmuseum.cz

Please note that the Education and Cultural Centre does not run the usual programmes dur ing the summer.
The programmes wi l l again be prepared f rom September .

CONCERTS IN THE SPANISH SYNAGOGUE
Spanish Synagogue,, Vězeňská 1, Praha 1

The Best Of Gershwin
5, 12, 14, 19, 26 and 28 July at 7 p.m.

L. Bernstein: West side story
G. Gershwin: Rhapsody in blue
F. Loewe: My fair lady
A. Rubinstein: Melody
L. Anderson: Plink, Plank, Plonk
J. Kern: Smoke Gets In Your Eyes; Ol´ Man River
Czech Collegium and soloists
Organized by BM ART, bmart@bmart.cz.

The Best Jewish Songs and World Musicals
6 and 20 July at 7 p.m.

L. Bernstein: West side story
F. Loewe: My fair lady
A. L. Weber: Evita, Cats, Phantom of Opera
G. Gershwin: Porgy and Bess
Jewish songs: Hevenu Shalom Alechem; As der rebbe Elimejlech; Lach Jerušalaim; Hava Nagila
Czech Collegium and soloists
Organized by BM ART, bmart@bmart.cz.

Jewish Mystical Melodies
1 July at 7 p.m.

J. Bock: Fiddler on the Roof
Alexander Shonert – violin, Natalia Shonert – piano
Organized by BM ART, bmart@bmart.cz.

The Best Czech and International Music
13 and 27 July at 7 p.m.

Bach, Dvořák, Bernstein, Vivaldi, Čajkovskij, Smetana, Verdi, Rossini, Mozart
Czech Collegium and soloists
Organized by BM ART, bmart@bmart.cz.

The Best Of Gershwin
23 July at 7 p.m.
Organized by Pragoplakát, info@pragoplakat.cz.

The Best Jewish Songs and World Musicals
2, 16 and 30 July at 4 p.m.
Organized by Pragoplakát,, info@pragoplakat.cz.

Hebrew Violin of Alexandr Shonert in Prague
9 July at 4 p.m.
Alexander Shonert – housle.
Organized by Pragoplakát,, info@pragoplakat.cz.

Jewels of Czech and World Music
7, 8, 21 and 22 July at 7 p.m.
Organized by O.A.M.

PERMANENT EXHIBITIONS OF THE JEWISH MUSEUM IN PRAGUE
Open every day except for Saturdays and Jewish holidays 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Maisel Synagogue, Prague 1, Maiselova 10
Permanent exhibition:
History of the Jews in Bohemia and Moravia I. – from the First Settlements to the Beginning of the Emancipation
Historical overview of the establishment of Jewish settlement in Bohemia and Moravia and of the legal and social status of Jews in the medieval state, plus a presentation of traditional Jewish scholarship with profiles of important Jewish thinkers and Mordechai Maisel, who founded the synagogue in the Renaissance period.

Spanish Synagogue, Prague 1, Vězeňská 1
Disabled access.
Permanent exhibitions:
History of the Jews in Bohemia and Moravia II. – from the Emancipation to the Present
Historical overview of the Jewish community in the enlightenment and emancipation period, Austro-Hungary, the First Czechoslovak Republic, the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia and the post-war years.

Winter Prayer Hall, upper floor of the Spanish Synagogue:
Synagogue Silver from Bohemia and Moravia – ritual objects from the collections of the Jewish Museum in Prague.

Pinkas Synagogue,Prague 1 (entrance from Široká 3)
Permanent exhibition:
Memorial to the Victims of the Holocaust from Bohemia and Moravia.
Featuring the 80,000 names of Jewish victims, which are hand-written on the synagogue walls.

Children’s Drawings from Terezín, 1942–1944 (upper floor).
A selection of drawings that provide a moving testimony to the cruel fate of the children incarcerated in the Terezín ghetto. In many cases, these pictures are all that is left to commemorate those who didn’t survive.

Klausen Synagogue, Prague 1, U Starého hřbitova 3a
Permanent exhibition:
Jewish Customs and Traditions – The Synagogue and Holidays (in the nave) – the importance of the synagogue and Jewish holidays.
Jewish Customs and Traditions – The Course of Life (in the gallery) – everyday life of the Jewish family and the customs associated with birth, circumcision, bar mitzvah, wedding, divorce and the Jewish household.

Ceremonial Hall – Prague Burial Society Building,, Prague 1, U Starého hřbitova 3a
Permanent exhibition:
Jewish Customs and Traditions– The Course of Life (final part)
– medicine in the ghetto, death, Jewish cemeteries in Bohemia and Moravia and the activities of the Prague Burial Society.

Old Jewish Cemetery, Prague 1 (entrance from Široká 3)
Established in the first half of the 15th century. The oldest tombstone, marking the grave of Avigdor Karo, dates from 1439. Burials took place here until 1787. There are now about 12,000 tombstones, although the number of buried is much greater. The picturesque cluster of tombstones from various periods result from the fact that older stones were lifted up several times from the lower layers. Many important personages are buried in the cemetery, including Rabbi Liwa ben Bezalel, known as Rabbi Löw (d. 1609), Mordecai Maisel (Primas of the Jewish Town) and David Gans (Renaissance scholar, mathematician and astronomer).

Jewish Cemetery in Žižkov,, Fibichova, Praha 3
Open on Mondays, Wednesdays 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., and Fridays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. For prior reservations, please phone 732 530 261.

Library and Reference Centre of the Jewish Museum in Prague
Prague 1, U Staré školy 1, 3
e-mail: library@jewishmuseum.cz, tel. 221 711 545 (Reading room and research room), 221 711 562 (Reference centre)
Reading room and research room: Tuesday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Wednesday 1 p.m. – 5 p.m., and Thursday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Reference Centre: Monday – Friday, 9.30 a.m. – 4.30 p.m.
The Library focuses on Hebrew studies, Jewish studies, history, art history, museology, anti-Semitism and the Holocaust and offers material, such as: traditional Judaistic literature, specialist literature, thematically focused fiction, Bohemian studies, Prague history, Judaistic periodicals, and a reference library with encyclopaedic publications, electronic information sources and Internet access.

Old-New Synagogue,, Prague 1, Červená ul.
Not part of the Jewish Museum in Prague.

Open daily except for Saturdays and Jewish holidays:

Sunday – Thursday:
January–March: 9.30–17.00
April–October: 9.30–18.00
November–December: 9.30–17.00

Friday:
January: 9.30–14.00 April–October: 9.30–18.00
February: 9.30–16.15 October: 9.30–17.00
March: 9.30–16.30 November–December: 9.30–15.15

www.jewishmuseum.cz


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