Council of American Jewish Museums
          E-News | January 2014   
In This Issue
Register and Save
Lerman Moves CAJM
Mary Alexander at Retreat
Vikan's Pilgrimages
Alliance President Joins Us
CAJM is ... 
Jewish art and history museums, historic sites, historical and archival societies, Holocaust centers, synagogue museums, Jewish Community Center galleries, children's museums, and university galleries ...  the professionals and volunteers who work in them ...  the children, adults, and families who visit them ...  the patrons who support them ...  the organization that keeps them vital.



To maximize participation at the 2014 CAJM Retreat, we have made sure that the event is affordable. Registration fees have been lowered and costs for single-room lodging and all meals are substantially lower than in previous years. And you can save even more - an additional $50 - when you register by the Early Bird Deadline of January 31. Costs aside, the program will be stellar: Among the full roster of educators, writers, curators, and creative artists who will be on board for Retreat/Forward:  Connecting with Communities in Changing Times are the co-author of Museums in Motion, a MacArthur Fellow, a renowned medievalist, and the President of the American Alliance of Museums. Find out more below and register for our exciting annual gathering, scheduled for March 23-25, 2014 at the Bon Secours Retreat and Conference Center near Baltimore, MD. 



What a treat: Monday evening of the Retreat will feature a presentation by Liz Lerman. The inspiring choreographer, performer, writer, and educator has been described by the Washington Post as "the source of an epochal revolution in the scope and purposes of dance art."  She founded and led the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange from 1976 to 2011, cultivating the company's unique multi-generational ensemble into a leading force in contemporary dance. Lerman was the recipient of a 2002 MacArthur "Genius Grant" Fellowship and a 2011 United States Artists USA Fellowship. She has worked extensively within the Jewish community, and her company has often made dances that address questions of faith. The Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, and American Dance Festival, among numerous presenting venues, have commissioned works by the gifted Lerman, who was recently an artist-in-residence at Harvard University. Come move with her in March.



An important Retreat session will examine "Changing Audiences and Expectations" - museum visitors' desires for self-expression, shared authority, and entertainment; their anticipation of interactivity and a lively social experience.  Chairing the discussion will be a true dean of our field, Mary Alexander. Currently Director of the Museum Advancement Program at the Maryland Historical Trust, Alexander has been a museum educator and administrator for more than forty years, with previous affiliations at the George Washington Bicentennial Center, National Archives and Records Administration, Mount Vernon Ladies' Association, and Hillwood Museum. She was associate editor for A Museum Education Anthology, co-authored Museums: Places of Learning, and most recently produced a revised edition of her father Edward Alexander's classic Museums in Motion, covering emerging trends and challenges of the 21st century.



Dr. Gary Vikan is an internationally known medieval art scholar, intrigued by objects of devotion ... and devotion of all sorts. At CAJM's gathering he will provide a lively and stimulating talk, "From the Holy Land to Grace Land" (also the title of his recent book), associating the Stations of the Cross with the ardent fans who make pilgrimages to Elvis Presley's home. An adjunct professor of art history at the Johns Hopkins University, Vikan was Director of Baltimore's Walters Art Museum from 1994-2013, where he oversaw major contextual reinstallations of its collections. Vikan was appointed by President Clinton to his Cultural Property Advisory Committee; was honored by the French Minister of Culture and Communication as a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres; and served as the AAM Directors' representative to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Holocaust Assets in the U.S.



We are honored that Ford W. Bell, President of the American Alliance of Museums since 2007, will address CAJM conference-goers. Bell has a longstanding relationship with the museum community. His grandfather, James Ford Bell, was a leading supporter of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (MIA), and also of the Bell Museum of Natural History at the University of Minnesota, named in his honor. Among Ford Bell's notable accomplishments, he helped raise $103 million as co-chair of the MIA's "Bring Art to Life" capital campaign and served as board chair for several years. He is also a veterinary oncologist and credits his many childhood visits to the Bell Museum with fostering a love of nature and science. He brings to AAM - and now, to CAJM - his passion and clear understanding of the role that museums play as vital locations for lifelong learning and inspiration.


CAJM offers resources for learning all year round on our website and at our annual conference; models professional standards; offers opportunities for information exchange; and works on behalf of Jewish museums and museums with Jewish content, like the American Jewish Historical Society, located at the Center for Jewish History in New York, NY. To right, an image from the current exhibition, "Contributors to the Cause: A History of Jewish Philanthropy in America."
Meet new colleagues & grow

your skills:

Become a Member
Stay current:
Join Our Mailing List
Like us on Facebook