Council of American Jewish Museums
          E-News | May 2015
In This Issue
Collections Find a Home
New Director in Milwaukee
JMM and JM Accomplishments
Conferences Coming Up
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.



B'nai B'rith International and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) have announced an important partnership that will make available the collections of the B'nai B'rith Klutznick National Jewish Museum (BBKNJM) at HUC-JIR's Skirball Museum in Cincinnati. Fine and decorative art and artifacts, both sacred and secular, will be exhibited in designated galleries at the Skirball, as well as in online exhibitions. Since the BBKNJM closed its doors in 2002, these materials have been largely unavailable to the public. Rabbi Aaron D. Panken, HUC-JIR President, said, "This wonderful partnership with B'nai B'rith International ... reinforces our commitment to the many ways in which the visual arts, illuminating Jewish history, identity, values and experience, can serve as a vital educational and cultural resource for our students, faculty, and the larger public." In addition, a select group of Klutznick artifacts with a DC focus will be loaned to the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington to be displayed in its new building, slated to open in 2020. (Left: Torah crown and breastplate by Israeli artist Ori Reshoff.  Right: Marc Chagall's design for the "Asher" window, Hadassah University Medical Center, Jerusalem, 1962)



The new executive director of Jewish Museum Milwaukee is Patti Sherman-Cisler (left). She comes to JMM from the Michael Kohler Arts Center, where, as Deputy Director of Operations, she led functions across the institution, from finance and facilities to strategic planning and special events. Prior to that, Sherman-Cisler worked for the Milwaukee Public Museum and the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. With degrees in Business Management and Cultural Anthropology, she serves on the AAM Management Committee and has been the recipient of the Woman of Influence Award from the Milwaukee Business Journal. Sherman-Cisler succeeds Kathie Bernstein, who, during her 30-year affiliation with the the Milwaukee Jewish Federation, was founding director of the Milwaukee Jewish Historical Society before becoming executive director of JMM, which opened its doors in 2008. Our best wishes to both of them.



The Jewish Museum of Maryland distinguished itself recently with a prompt and thoughtful response to last month's civil unrest in Baltimore. The museum offered free admission to the museum during the first week in May; arranged to donate 50% of proceeds from a May 17 "Ultimate Mendes Cohen Experience" bus tour to a special fund dedicated to rebuilding damaged areas of the city; and has launched In Every Generation, a pop-up exhibition with images and records 

reflecting personal courage in the pursuit of social justice in Baltimore through its history (above, group works on protest posters to support Soviet Jewry at JCC, 1973; Sussman Photography). In New York, The Jewish Museum has received a notable honor from the American section of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA). From the Margins: Lee Krasner and Norman Lewis, 1945-1952, which provided a parallel look at two notable abstract expressionists, was awarded 1st Place as Best Thematic Museum Show in New York during 2014. Congratulations to Norman Kleeblatt, Susan & Elihu Rose Chief Curator, who organized the exhibition. Awards will be presented at a ceremony in New York on June 8.



Next week the American Alliance of Museum and four partnering institutions sponsor a three-day conference, Leading the Future of Museum Education: Challenges and Opportunities.  CAJM

and Engage (London, UK). Directors and managers of museum education departments will explore ways to navigate new learning ecosystems, honor knowledge and expertise, nurture professional development, and describe and measure success. The event is scheduled for May 27-29 at the History Colorado Center (right). Another education conference to keep in mind: The 10th annual Hands On! International Association of Children in Museums Conference (left

) in Amsterdam will bring together 300 museum professionals and experts from more than 25 countries; the Jewish Historical Museum will play a significant role. This event is not until October 2015, but the early bird deadline is June 1st.



A recent AAM bulletin on Building the Future of Education provides a useful, quotable state-of-the-art report, with statistics on visitorship, budgeting, and the variety of programs offered to school children and teachers across the United States. ... Reminder: the Museum Assessment Program (MAP), which helps small and mid-sized museums strengthen their operations, plan for the future, and meet national standards through self-study and site visits from peer reviewers, has a July 1 deadline.



CAJM offers resources for learning on our website and at our annual conference, models professional standards, provides opportunities for information exchange, and works on behalf of Jewish museums and museums throughout North America, like the Koffler Centre of the Arts in Toronto, Ontario. The Koffler presents contemporary cross-disciplinary arts program to encourage inquiry and exploration; promotes an inter-cultural dialogue that engages Jewish identity with diverse perspectives and global voices; and contributes to the development of contemporary culture by pushing boundaries and supporting innovation across the arts.


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