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Three New Exhibition Series Launches Today at The Jewish Museum

Beginning today, November 8, 2013, The Jewish Museum will launch three new exhibition series that demonstrate the Museum's commitment to exploring art and culture, historical and contemporary, while infusing it with an up-to-date sensibility and a global perspective.

"In his first year at The Jewish Museum, Jens Hoffmann, as Deputy Director, Exhibitions and Public Programs, has reimagined aspects of our exhibition program. These new curatorial initiatives provide fascinating opportunities to gain fresh perspectives on our collection and rich history of cultivating contemporary art and artists, all with an expanded global outlook," said Claudia Gould, Helen Goldsmith Menschel Director, The Jewish Museum.

Masterpieces & Curiosities is a series of exhibitions focused on individual works in the Museum's world-renowned collection. Over the course of seven exhibitions from 2013 to 2017, The Jewish Museum's curators will explore objects that highlight the breadth and diversity of the collection, ranging from an iconic Alfred Stieglitz photograph to a Moroccan wedding costume and a painting of a Passover seder by Carnegie Prize-winner Nicole Eisenman. These intimate exhibitions will provide new insights into works from the Museum's collection-contextualizing, examining, and rethinking the piece on view by surrounding it with other artworks, documents, and source materials. The first exhibition in this series, Masterpieces & Curiosities: A Medieval Aquamanile, will focus on an extremely rare, late 12th-century bronze lion aquamanile, recently acquired from the Michael and Judy Steinhardt Judaica Collection sale at Sotheby's in April 2013.

Sights and Sounds: Global Film and Video explores new film and video works as selected by twenty-five curators from around the world. Over the course of two years, the series will introduce New York audiences to the latest developments in filmmaking within the art context from across the globe-with a particular emphasis on work being made outside Western Europe and the United States. Each curator has chosen new film and video works from their respective regions-including Argentina, Vietnam, Nigeria, New Zealand, Egypt and many other countries. Their selections are screened for one month each in the Museum's newly refurbished media center, which has been transformed into a miniature cinema. The works in Sights and Sounds touch on themes significant to both Jewish culture and universal human experience, including spirituality, exile, language, conflict, family, humor, and history. Cambodia will be the first country represented with four films selected by curator Erin Gleeson.

Using Walls, Floors, and Ceilings showcases contemporary art in the Museum's Skirball Lobby. Artists will be invited to create new work or adapt a recent piece for the Museum's spacious entryway. The first installation is a work by French artist Claire Fontaine consisting of nine neon signs suspended from the ceiling, each reading, in a different language, "Isle of Tears," a reference to the experience of immigrants passing through Ellis Island. Using Walls, Floors, and Ceilings builds on the Museum's 1970 program called Using Walls that featured the work of 14 up-and-coming International Artists of the time including Richard Artschwager, Sol Lewitt, and Lawrence Weiner, among others. Now, nearly 45 years later, The Jewish Museum is revisiting this innovative moment in its history with a new series of artist commissions, showcasing new or adapted work by artists from around the globe. In May 2014, the series will feature a work by Mel Bochner, who participated in the 1970 program, timed to his solo exhibition at the Museum.

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