31 Mar - 3 Sep

Exhibition Jewish Museum: New opportunities, new art


What do Theater Tuschinski, the Bijenkorf and the synagogue on Jacob Obrechtplein have in common? Discover this and more about the role that Jews played between 1880 and 1940 in the development of the then popular new art and architecture styles in the Netherlands, such as Art Nouveau, Amsterdam School and Art Deco. And find out how they used these ‘new arts’ to participate in society, to rise up and to emphasize their own Jewish identity.

New opportunities, new art takes you to the Netherlands in the period between 1880 and 1940, a hopeful time full of new techniques and ideals. The emergence and flowering of new art and architecture styles offers social opportunities. After being excluded from professional groups and (art) associations for a long time, many Jews have finally succeeded in acquiring a visible place in society and the art world. The works in the exhibition reveal the stories of Jewish makers and clients who actively and self-consciously chose to integrate and emancipate.

Step into a bygone world of distinct styles that range from opulent and dynamic to sleek and geometric. New arts such as Art Nouveau, Amsterdamse School and Art Deco are not only applied in expensive works of art. They can also be found in everyday life: from architecture and furniture to posters and crockery. The designs are aimed at making everyone’s life more beautiful. Such as a cookie tin from the HEMA department store, handkerchiefs from De Bijenkorf, and a toaster packaging designed by Fré Cohen.

New opportunities, new art shows many iconic and inspiring works by well-known artists, architects and designers such as Joseph Mendes da Costa, Samuel Jessurun de Mesquita, Fré Cohen and Michel de Klerk. A large number of them were made for Jewish clients, such as Tuschinski, De Bijenkorf, HEMA and some of the most beautiful synagogues in the Netherlands.

New Opportunities, new art, until September 3th, Jewish Museum, Nieuwe Amstelstraat 1

Joods Museum, Nieuwe Amstelstraat 1