The National Museum of American Jewish History (NMAJH) is pleased to announce a variety of programs and activities for all ages this season, from the special exhibition The Art of Rube Goldberg, to the onstage forum Antisemitism in America: Is Hate Speech Free Speech, to a film screening with live score. Guests can get in the holiday spirit at the Young Friends of NMAJH’s Cocktails and Candle LightingHanukkah celebration and the annual Being ___ at Christmas day of family fun. The Museum will be open and free on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and throughout the month of February.
To kick-off the winter programming season, the Museum is expanding its accessibility programming with a Sensory Friendly Day on Sunday, December 2. Visitors will enjoy pay-what-you-wish admission from 12 – 4 pm. The custom self-guided tour of the Museum features a modified, sensory-friendly version of the Museum, including lowered sounds and a quiet area to use as a cool-down space. Upon arrival, visitors will find customized NMAJH sensory-friendly backpacks, a new addition, that include noise-reducing headphones, weighted shoulder pad, fidget tools, tinted glasses, and non-verbal communication cards to help guests understand and communicate museum-specific vocabulary in addition to thoughts, ideas, and feelings. These offerings are a part of the Museum's efforts to help those with autism and other special needs explore the Museum in a way that is calming, enjoyable, and informative.
The full list of winter programming follows. Ticket information for each event can be found on the Museum’s Calendar of Events, nmajh.org/calendar
The Art of Rube Goldberg
On view through January 21, 2019
The Art of Rube Goldberg is the first comprehensive retrospective exhibition of Rube Goldberg's work since the Smithsonian's 1970 celebration of the artist. It explores his varied career from his earliest published works and iconic Rube Goldberg machine invention drawings, to his Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoons, and more. Throughout his long career, Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) chronicled almost every salient aspect of modern American life. His work touched on everything from fashion and sports to gender, politics, and international affairs. This exhibition explores the artistry and wit that made Rube Goldberg one of the twentieth century's most celebrated and enduring cartoonists - and a household name. The Art of Rube Goldberg was conceived by Creighton Michael; developed in cooperation with Heirs of Rube Goldberg, LLC, NY, NY; and curated by Max Weintraub. Tour coordinated by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC. Major support provided by Bank of America. Learn more: nmajh.org/rube
Sensory Friendly Day
Sunday, December 2, 12 -4 PM
NMAJH will offer a custom-designed self-guided sensory friendly experience. Tour participants will experience a modified, sensory-friendly version of the Museum's Core exhibition and the special exhibition The Art of Rube Goldberg featuring lowered sounds, a quiet area to use as a cool-down space, sensory friendly backpacks, and more. This event is a part of the Museum's accessibility programs to help those with autism and other special needs explore the Museum in a way that is calming, enjoyable, and informative. Prepare for your visit with the Museum's Social Story online. This event is in partnership with Jewish Learning Venture's Whole Community Inclusion and JCHAI Judith Creed Horizons for Achieving Independence.
Meet MI POLIN
Wednesday, December 5 at 2:00 PM
NMAJH is proud to welcome Helena Czernek and Aleksander Prugar from Warsaw, owners and designers of the MI POLIN cast bronze mezuzot. Join us for a very special presentation. Through video and conversation, learn their story and their process for finding, researching, and preserving mezuzah traces left behind on doorframes in WWII Poland.
Young Friends of NMAJH Present: Cocktails and Candle Lighting
Thursday, December 6, 7 – 10 PM
Join the Young Friends of NMAJH for their annual Hanukkah celebration filled with lights, latkes, and libations! Our event, which attracted 200+ guests last year, will feature a specialty cocktail, wine and beer, and Hanukkah-inspired hors d'oeuvres.
Antisemitism in America: is Hate Speech Free Speech?
Monday, December 10 at 6:00 PM
Free with advance registration. Made possible thanks to support from The Snider Foundation.
How do we fight antisemitism while protecting the Constitutional rights of all Americans? This is the central question our expert speakers will debate in this timely conversation.
Moderated by Jeff Rosen, President & CEO of the National Constitution Center, with panelists Brooke Goldstein, Executive Director of The Lawfare Project, and Greg Lukianoff, President & CEO of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE).
Members’ Curator Tour
Tuesday, December 11 at 11:00 AM
Members at all levels are invited to attend a private, curator-led tour of The Art of Rube Goldberg with Dr. Josh Perelman, Chief Curator and Director of Exhibitions and Interpretation. Space is limited; RSVP firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-923-3811 ext.106.
Concert Screening: The Ancient Law
Wednesday, December 12
In partnership with the Gershman Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival and ld at NMAJH
Details and tickets available at PJFF.org
Renowned Klezmer fiddler Alicia Svigals and silent film pianist Donald Sosin return to NMAJH with an original score they will perform LIVE during a screening of The Ancient Law. One of the hottest tickets at the 68th Berlinale, Ewald André Dupont’s classic German silent film, The Ancient Law, tells the story of Baruch (Ernst Deutsch), the son of a rabbi in Galicia during the 1860s who catches the acting bug and leaves home against his father’s will to join a traveling theater troupe only to return to his family and life in the shtetl. Made during the mass migration of Eastern European Jews fleeing the Russian Revolution and the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the film’s depiction of 19th century Jewish life in Europe is sympathetic to the Orthodox Jewish culture of Europe’s nascent refugee population while still highlighting the tension between tradition and modernity. Four years after its release, The Ancient Law served as the primary source material for The Jazz Singer (1927). Special thanks: The restoration of this lost masterpiece of German-Jewish cinema was made possible by a collaboration between the Deutsche Kinemathek and ARRI laboratory, together with ZDF and ARTE.
Being ____ at Christmas
Tuesday, December 25
Free for NMAJH Members, Children are $5, regular admission applies to all other admission types.
The Museum is open. The galleries are warm. All we need is you to get the party started. Join us for live music with returning favorite Emmy Award-wining Alex & the Kaleidoscope. Meet the "man behind the machine" in the special exhibition The Art of Rube Goldberg filled with educational fun for the whole family. Also enjoy Rube-themed crafts, face painting and balloon art from Bon Bon's Parties, classic films, story time, and more! Full schedule of activities is available online at NMAJH.org/Dec25. Sponsored by the Robert Saligman Jewish Heritage Fund.
Monday, January 21
The Museum is open and FREE as we honor the social justice legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. through family-friendly activities. Explore stories of American Jews as they fought discrimination and overcame adversity within the larger context of America’s ongoing struggles for religious, ethnic, and racial freedom. This is also the last day to see The Art of Rube Goldberg. Visit the NMAJH website for a complete schedule of activities.
Monday, February 18
Join us for a special Family Day honoring our nation’s presidents. Explore an original letter written by George Washington to the Jewish community (on view at the Museum) and write your own letter to the president at the Freedom Family Presidential Corner. Join us for crafts and story time for children, teens, and adults of all abilities. You might meet George Washington himself, he promised to stop by and say hello.