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The Jewish Museum
1109 5th Ave at 92nd St
New York, NY 10128

The Jewish Museum
1109 5th Ave at 92nd St
New York, NY 10128
212.423.3200

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Who We Are

Welcome to the Jewish Museum, a museum in New York City at the intersection of art and Jewish culture for people of all backgrounds. Whether you visit our home in the elegant Warburg mansion on Museum Mile, or engage with us online, there is something for everyone. Through our exhibitions, programs, and collection of nearly 30,000 works of art, ceremonial objects, and media, visitors can journey through 4,000 years of art and Jewish culture from around the world.


As an art museum representing the diversity of Jewish culture and identity, the Jewish Museum believes in free expression and an open society. We embrace multiple viewpoints regardless of race, gender, national origin, or religion, and we oppose discrimination in all its forms.


Our exhibitions and public programs provide platforms for cross-cultural dialogue, fostering empathy, mutual understanding, and respect. We champion the powerful roles art and artists can play in our communities, both inside and outside the Museum’s walls.

Our Mission

The Jewish Museum is dedicated to the enjoyment, understanding, and preservation of the artistic and cultural heritage of the Jewish people through its unparalleled collections and distinguished exhibitions. Learn More

History

The Jewish Museum was founded in 1904 in the library of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where it was housed for more than four decades. Now located in the landmark Warburg mansion, this elegant former residence has been the home of the Museum since 1947Learn More

From the Blog

Seeing Florine Stettheimer’s “Family Portrait II” Through... Read More

Florine Stettheimer, “Family Portrait II,” 1933. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. Image provided by The Museum of Modern Art / SCALA / Art Resource, New York
https://medium.com/media/c8e468b1cc38d61df70f5657ec23b8d2/href

Verbal Description tours at the Jewish Museum bring our exhibitions to life for visitors who are blind or have low vision, using descriptive language and touch objects to convey the visual world. In conjunction with Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry, an exhibition dedicated to Jazz Age painter, poet, designer, and early feminist, the following verbal description closely examines a work by Florine Stettheimer.

This large horizontal painting is a group portrait of the artist Florine Stettheimer, her mother and her two sisters Carrie and Ettie. We can describe the painting in three layers: background, middle-ground and foreground.

Florine Stettheimer, “Family Portrait II” (detail), 1933. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. Image provided by The Museum of Modern Art / SCALA / Art Resource, New York

The middle ground of this painting, occupying roughly the bottom half, is the interior in which the three sisters and their mother are depicted. Standing in profile, almost all the way to the left of the painting, we have Florine in a black suit with a red collar and red heels, holding a palette. A few inches to the right is her sister Ettie, sitting in a blue and white patterned armchair with an open book in her lap and red fan in her hand. She is wearing a short sleeved dress that is tied at the neckline.

Mirroring those figures on the viewer’s right is the mother, seated in a yellow chair, more or less facing us, with a patterned shawl over a light pink dress, with billowy skirt. And lastly we have Carrie, standing next to her mother in a light blue sleeveless dress, lacey shawl dangling over her shoulder, cigarette in hand. All of the characters are placed on top of a floral yellow and brown rug, with a half circle in the center. On that half circle are gauzy triangles with each of the women’s names written on them, which helps identify who is who.

Florine Stettheimer, “Family Portrait II” (detail), 1933. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. Image provided by The Museum of Modern Art / SCALA / Art Resource, New York

In the center and foreground are three large flowers. They are each around 8 inches in diameter, and truly dominate the scene. They are proportionally much larger than any of the human figures. All three flowers, a saturated-red poppy, a white lily, and a pink rose, are in full bloom and feature textured tendrils of green streaming out from them.

The background of the piece occupies roughly the top half of the canvas and appears to be the view out of a picture window. This background is painted a medium-blue, with various amounts of white added into it. It looks like a view of the water and sky, and in fact there is a very faint horizon line separating the two.

Florine Stettheimer, “Family Portrait II” (detail), 1933. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. Image provided by The Museum of Modern Art / SCALA / Art Resource, New York

Across this blue background are various New York landmarks. At the right edge, about 2 inches down from the top, Stettheimer painted an architectural detail from her apartment building. This detail, a fire-breathing salamander, is opulent in terms of draftsmanship but has no color. It’s inscribed with their address, “182 W 58, New York”. The right vertical edge of the piece features a long, skinny red curtain with gold trim that partially obscures the architectural detail. About 5 inches left of this detail is a small white depiction of the statue of liberty, floating on a star-shaped island.

Florine Stettheimer, “Family Portrait II” (detail), 1933. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. Image provided by The Museum of Modern Art / SCALA / Art Resource, New York

The left edge features a white cascading curtain that descends in steps, with vibrant yellow trim. That curtain partially obscures an image of the RCA building at Rockefeller Center. The building is white and has yellow capital letters reading RCA (for Radio Corporation of America) on top, and in light blue “MUSIC HALL” running vertically down the building. Next to that is Cleopatra’s needle, the Egyptian obelisk installed outside the Met Museum, with a blue and white banner running vertically along its front reading “4 Saints Seen by Florine”. Next to the needle is the Chrysler Building, and a few inches in from that is a chandelier which seems to echo the building’s form.

To learn more about programs for visitors with disabilities at the Jewish Museum, visit TheJewishMuseum.org/Access. All programs are free.

Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry is on view at the Jewish Museum through September 24.


Seeing Florine Stettheimer’s “Family Portrait II” Through Language was originally published in The Jewish Museum on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Seeing Florine Stettheimer’s “A Model (Nude Self-Portrait)”... Read More

Florine Stettheimer, “A Model (Nude Self-Portrait)”, 1915. Oil on canvas. 48¼ x 68¼ in. Art Properties, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University in the City of New York. Gift of the Estate of Ettie Stettheimer, 1967
https://medium.com/media/2ff6e9b93da552f12c483697a1f7a580/href

Verbal Description tours at the Jewish Museum bring our exhibitions to life for visitors who are blind or have low vision, using descriptive language and touch objects to convey the visual world. In conjunction with Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry, an exhibition dedicated to Jazz Age painter, poet, designer, and early feminist, the following verbal description closely examines a work by Florine Stettheimer, possibly the earliest known nude self-portrait by a female artist.

A Model by Florine Stettheimer is a large, horizontal, nude, considered to be a self-portrait of Florine Stettheimer. The painting is four feet high and more than five feet across.

She painted this piece at the age of 45. In it, Stettheimer is reclining but propped up on her right side by large pillows. She lies on a mostly white comforter or textile with red vine accents. On the left side of the painting her arm is bent at the elbow and she rests her head delicately on her finger tips. She has a modern looking short-ish red hairstyle. On the bed below this arm is a golden necklace made of circular beads.

Her other arm is also bent at the elbow but drawn in to her body with her forearm extended straight up. In the air she holds a bouquet of flowers, providing some of the only saturated color in the piece. Stettheimer’s legs are crossed at the ankles, leaving her pale body on display for the viewer.

The expression on her face is a mixture of aloof, bemused, and knowing. She looks right at the viewer, and her red lips are together and slightly curved upward into a very subtle smile.

Detail. Florine Stettheimer, “A Model (Nude Self-Portrait)”, 1915.

The background of this piece is less intricate than her later work. Behind the figure is a curtain depicted through vertical brushwork of white and light lilac. The brushwork is thick and visible, giving the background a great amount of dimension. It is flanked, across the top edge and side edges of the painting, by a light pink curtain, with black fringe. These curtains however don’t extend all the way down the left and right sides of the work; they are interrupted by the model’s sumptuous pillow.

This painting is inspired in part by Edouard Manet’s 1863 painting entitled “Olympia.” In Manet’s painting, the model is meeting the viewer’s gaze, wearing a gold bracelet with a maid behind her carrying flowers from an admirer. Olympia was more than likely modeled on a sex worker and for that reason caused a scandal at the Paris Salon of 1865. In contrast, Stettheimer is featured by herself, holding her own bouquet in the air.

Edouard Manet, “Olympia,” 1863. Google Art Project.

To learn more about programs for visitors with disabilities at the Jewish Museum, visit TheJewishMuseum.org/Access. All programs are free.

Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry is on view at the Jewish Museum through September 24.


Seeing Florine Stettheimer’s “A Model (Nude Self-Portrait)” Through Language was originally published in The Jewish Museum on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Art in the Age of Digital Reproduction: Visitors... Read More

Opening reception of the exhibition “The Arcades: Contemporary Art and Walter Benjamin.” Photo: scottruddevents.com

The Jewish Museum’s exhibition, The Arcades: Contemporary Art and Walter Benjamin, closed on Sunday, August 6. Featuring contemporary artworks seen through the lens of influential philosopher Walter Benjamin’s literary work, The Arcades Project, the exhibition was designed so visitors could experience the meandering nature of Benjamin’s text.

We compiled some our favorite responses to the exhibition on social media to represent how today’s digital flâneur can engage with Benjamin’s ideas. Bombarded with sensory information, winding corridors, and seemingly-sporadic organization, one visitor said about the exhibition, “It succeeds in capturing the spirit of Benjamin’s exuberance in mass culture and the nonlinear, never finished style of The Arcades Project.”

Mirrors prove even more seductive to the contemporary iPhone toting flâneur than the 19th century shopper Benjamin wrote about, transfixed by all the reflective surfaces, shops, and cafes of the early arcades.

Instagram users @noreenkahmad, @xoxobellaaa, @luben_dimcheff, and @ljauregui take selfies with Mungo Thomson’s mirror installation “June 25, 2001 (How the Universe Will End) March 6, 1995 (When Did the Universe Begin?),” 2012.

Inspired by all the ways people engaged with the Mungo Thompson mirror installation, illustrator Jenny Kroik captured a fellow visitor contemplating the significance of time in paint.

https://medium.com/media/4ae7c94a9a6eb415ee539fb2b638a90c/href

An exhibition inspired by a book, there was a lot to digest for those who like to read. One literary visitor compared his experience to “the best drink in existence” according to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

This exhibition on The Arcades Project and art. Straight fire!! So much going on. Better than a pangalactic gargleblaster. @TheJewishMuseum

 — @tmesyan

Not your grandma's exhibition labels. Design by @projectprojects for Walter B show @thejewishmuseum https://t.co/t34KWU2Nd5

 — @ellenLupton

Drawing a parallel between contemporary protest culture and the revolutionary spirit of Paris, visitors related to Andrea Bower’s large-scale mural, Triumph of Labor, and its ability to transcend time.

https://medium.com/media/80b1f5574b7f2007c3cc549715aad7b2/hrefhttps://medium.com/media/ba65e7ed45e8d60988968d49f1d805b1/hrefhttps://medium.com/media/3858de7c82416506cf3056db23cb7c8c/href

The exhibition, a combination of art and text, provided visitors with an interpretation of the physical manifestation of Benjamin’s essays. Tweeter Ann Demeester refers to it as “a multi-layered 3D essay”.

@TheJewishMuseum New York last week. On impact of Walter Benjamin on the arts now. An exhibition that reads as a multi-layered 3D essay.

 — @AnnDemeester

The Arcades: Contemporary Art and Walter Benjamin brought Benjamin’s unfinished magnum opus into the contemporary age, continuing the ongoing conversation on politics, culture, and aesthetics that Benjamin began in 1927.

– Orli, Digital Marketing Intern and Victoria Reis, Digital Marketing Associate


Art in the Age of Digital Reproduction: Visitors Respond to The Arcades was originally published in The Jewish Museum on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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