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Talks and Performances

There is always something new to discover at the Jewish Museum. We offer a wide range of Public Programs for adult audiences, from insightful discussions with artists and curators, to talks by contemporary authors and thinkers, and diverse performances inspired by exhibitions on view.

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Installation view of Chagall: Love, War and Exile. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris. Photo by David Andrako.

Bang on a Can. Photo by Will Ragozzino/

​People at Parties perform at The Wind Up, an after-hours series of art and music. Photo by David Adrako.

​Dialogues and Discourse: Mel Bochner: Strong Language.

A few of the revelers at ​The Wind Up. Photo by Will Ragozzino/

​Exhibition Walkthrough: Other Primary Structures.

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Special Exhibition Programs

Explore lectures, panel discussions and gallery programs inspired by Museum exhibitions on view.

  • A Closer Look Gallery Talks

    A Closer Look Gallery Talks

    In-depth explorations of select works of art in the temporary exhibition galleries, led by Museum educators.

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  • Dialogue and Discourse

    Dialogue and Discourse

    Evening conversations inspired by current exhibitions exploring artistic practice, global perspectives, and cultural issues.

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  • This Is How We Do It

    This Is How We Do It

    Conversations with Jewish Museum curators on the process of developing exhibitions.

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  • Writers and Artists Respond

    Writers and Artists Respond

    Thought-provoking discussions and performances led by artists, musicians, and writers in the Museum’s galleries.

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Conversations and Screenings

A variety of daytime and evening programs featuring celebrated authors, prominent critics and scholars engaging in rigorous discussion.

  • AM at the JM

    AM at the JM

    A monthly breakfast salon for the 21st century, featuring notable arts and cultural figures at cafés around New York City.

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  • Author Talks

    Author Talks

    Readings and lectures by writers on their recently published books or works in progress.

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  • Screenings


    Selections for film screenings at the Jewish Museum are inspired by the exhibitions on view.

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  • Wish You Were Here

    Wish You Were Here

    Jens Hoffmann, Deputy Director, Exhibitions and Public Programs, interviews the subjects of Andy Warhol’s Ten Portraits of Jews of the Twentieth Century (1980).

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The Wind Up

The Museum’s after-hours series of events featuring art, music, performance, and gallery tours

Upcoming Events:


Dynasty Handbag and friends

Thursday, June 30 | 8 pm

The Museum’s after-hours series features art-making, gallery tours, and a performance by Dynasty Handbag.

Tickets: $13 Advance, $18 At the Door

Purchase Tickets

Past Events:

Comedy Night

Comedy Night

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Our after-hours series The Wind Up returns with a special Comedy Night hosted by Josh Gondelman, writer for Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, and celebrates the release of his new album, Physical Whisper.

The lineup features sets by comedians Josh Gondelman, Ted Alexandro, Sean Patton, Michelle Wolf, and 2 Dope Queens (Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams), and a performance by musical guest Anya Marina.

Ticket purchase includes an open bar with beer, wine, and snacks, plus a tour of Unorthodox at 8 pm and open galleries for Isaac Mizrahi: An Unruly History.

The Power of Pictures

The Power of Pictures

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Experience the radical film and photography on view in The Power of Pictures: Early Soviet Photography, Early Soviet Film. Join us for an evening of music and art, featuring a live performance by the raucous dance band Romashka, fronted by Lithuanian-American singer Inna Barmash, and a set by DJ Spinach, known for his unique mixture of world music sounds. 

The night features an open beer and wine bar, and exhibition tours of The Power of Pictures at 8:30 and 9:30 pm.

Programming and marketing support is provided by Genesis Philanthropy Group.

Revolution of the Eye

Revolution of the Eye

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Celebrate the visual power and cultural impact of American television and modern art explored in the exhibition Revolution of the Eye: Modern Art and the Birth of American Television. Join us for a night of live performance and art-making, with a set by DJ Louie XIV, a headlining performance by pop-rock band Mainland, and screen printing inspired by Op Art.

The Wind Up will feature an open beer and wine bar. 

Beauty Is Power

Beauty Is Power

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Experience the bold redefinition of beauty on display in Helena Rubinstein: Beauty Is Power. Join us for an evening of music and art, featuring a live set by garage-pop band Beverly, fronted by the brilliant female vocalist and guitarist Drew Citron, and an opening DJ set by Le Chev. Rubinstein’s iconic style will be celebrated through numerous art activities including statement jewelry making, nail art, and a photo booth for capturing one-of-a-kind portraits.

The evening will also feature an open beer and wine bar, and exhibition tours of Helena Rubinstein: Beauty Is Power at 8:15 and 9:15 pm.

From the Margins

From the Margins

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Wind Up returns this fall to celebrate the painterly innovation on view in From the Margins: Lee Krasner and Norman Lewis, 1945 – 1952. Join us for an evening of music and art, featuring a live set by rapper, performance artist, and poet Mykki Blanco; a DJ set by emerging artist and music producer P. Morris; spin art T-shirt making; an abstract painting station; and exhibition tours. The event also includes an open beer and wine bar.

Mystic Crystal Ball

Installation view of threeASFOUR: MER KA BA. Exhibition designed by Studio Christian Wassmann.

Mystic Crystal Ball

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Celebrate high fashion, futuristic architecture and a meeting of cultures in this evening of art, dance, and music inspired by avant-garde fashion trio threeASFOUR. Live music by The Crystal Ark with a DJ set by Gavin Russom, viewings of threeASFOUR’s exhibition MER KA BA, screenprinting activities with mystical patterns, and a special screening of collaborative video works by threeASFOUR and Jessica Mitrani. Open wine and beer bar with ID.


Music performances at the Jewish Museum are inspired by exhibitions on view

Upcoming Events:

Performance by Arto Lindsay

Thursday, May 12 | 7:30 pm

This concert featuring Arto Lindsay echoes the themes of cultural experimentation and artistic cross-pollination explored in the exhibition, breaking down the distinctions between American and Brazilian rock music, pop music, experimental music, and improvisation.

$18 General; $15 Students and Seniors; $12 Jewish Museum and Bang on a Can List Members

Purchase Tickets

Performance By Don Byron

Thursday, July 14 | 7:30 pm

Don Bryon is renowned for his dedication to and innovation in quintessential American traditional music genres from klezmer to blues to bluegrass to gospel to jazz.

Tickets: $18 General; $15 Students and Seniors; $12 Jewish Museum and Bang on a Can Members

Purchase Tickets

Past Events:

Bang on a Can: Unorthodox

Thursday, February 4, 2016

The String Quartets of Steve Reich - Featuring Mivos Quartet 

The Mivos Quartet performs the string quartets of Steve Reich. Reich is one of New York’s and the world’s most influential composers and his quartets are arguably the most important cycle of quartets since Béla Bartók. This concert includes his Holocaust-related masterpiece Different Trains, and the intensely contrapuntal Triple Quartet, and the emotional and complex WTC 9/11.

The performance corresponds to the Museum’s exhibition Unorthodox

The Word: Spoken, Sung, and Played

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Acclaimed Israeli pianist Daniel Gortler presents a unique chamber music concert featuring Brahms's Die schöne Magelone along with other 19th- and 20th- century classics dedicated to the word. The program will also include performances by internationally renowned vocalists Lauren Flanigan and David Adam Moore.

The recital program will include:

Johannes Brahms / Ludwig Tieck 
The Fair Magelone Lieder Op. 33
Published in 1869

15 Romances for Voice and Piano
With texts from Ludwig Tieck’s novella, “The Love Story of the Fair Magelone and Count Peter of Provence”


Luciano Berio
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man from Epifanie
Composed 1960 – 1963
Originally for voice and orchestra; arranged for piano by Christopher Cooley
Text by James Joyce

Franz Schubert
Three Piano Pieces “3  Klavierstucke,” D. 946
Composed in 1828

Bang on a Can: The Power of Pictures

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Featuring Robert Black, the Hartt Bass Band and Friends

Composers who were isolated behind the Iron Curtain had to develop their own unique ways of pushing musical boundaries. Bassist and founding member of the Bang on a Can All-Stars Robert Black anchors a program of chamber music by experimental Soviet composers Galina Ustvolskaya, Arthur Lourie, and Sofia Gubaidulaina. A highlight of the program is a rare performance of Ustvolskaya’s relentless Composition No. 2 for piano, eight double basses, and one giant cube of wood.

This performance corresponds to the Museum’s exhibition The Power of Pictures: Early Soviet Photos, Early Soviet Film

Bang on a Can: Repetition and Difference

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Featuring Todd Reynolds

A forerunner in the expansion of the violin beyond its classical and “wood-bound” tradition, Todd Reynolds electrifies in concert, weaving together composed and improvised segments, and making use of computer technology and digital loops to sculpt his sounds in real time, seamlessly integrating minimalist, pop, Jazz, Indian, African, Celtic and indigenous folk music into his own sonic blend. The violinist of choice for a generation of New York composers, particularly those who trace their influences to the minimalists of downtown New York, this program explores repetition and difference in music for violin and electronics by Bang on a Can co-founders Michael Gordon and David Lang, expressivist/post-minimalist Ingram Marshall, and by Todd Reynolds himself.

The performance corresponds to the Museum’s exhibition Repetition and Difference.

This concert is made possible by a generous endowment from the William Petschek Family.

Bang on a Can: Revolution of the Eye

Bang on a Can All-Stars

Bang on a Can: Revolution of the Eye

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Featuring Bang on a Can All-Stars

This concert highlights the relationship between music and image. The Bang on a Can All-Stars will perform an acclaimed work by clarinetist-composer Don Byron to accompany a screening of Eugene, an early television show by pioneering American comedian Ernie Kovacs. The program will also include Fade to Slide, a music and video piece from Bang on a Can’s brand new CD Field Recordings by visual artist Christian Marclay where short fragments of films are edited into a rapid succession of events that the musicians use as a structure for their performance. Plus works from the All-Stars’ core repertoire by Bang on a Can co-founders David Lang and Julia Wolfe.

The performance corresponds to the Museum’s exhibition Revolution of the Eye: Modern Art and the Birth of American Television.

Don Byron: Eugene with film of Ernie Kovacs

Don Byron: Basquiat

Christian Marclay: Fade to Slide with film

David Lang: Sunray

Julia Wolfe: Lick

Bang on a Can: Beauty Is Power

Maya Beiser,

Bang on a Can: Beauty Is Power

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Featuring Maya Beiser

Inspired by Helena Rubinstein – the fascinating, self-made beauty-industry powerhouse ­­– the celebrated cellist Maya Beiser asks: Is beauty powerful? For this concert, held in conjunction with the exhibition currently on view at the Jewish Museum, Beiser has chosen to perform beautiful music by powerful women. From Hildegard von Bingen to Janis Joplin to Imogen Heap, this program explores themes of beauty, spirituality, and ritual. The concert features the U.S. premiere of Anna Clyne’s Rest These Hands and the world premiere of Emunah by Bang on a Can co-founder Julia Wolfe.

Maya Beiser was raised in the Galilee Mountains in Israel, surrounded with the music and rituals of Jews, Muslims, and Christians. Beiser studied classical cello repertoire and has dedicated her work to reinventing solo cello performance in the mainstream classical area. She was a founding member of the Bang on a Can All-Stars, has collaborated with Steve Reich, Brian Eno, and Shirin Neshat, and has performed in stage shows at BAM and other top venues around the world.

Bang on a Can: From the Margins

© Patrícia Magalhães

Bang on a Can: From the Margins

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Featuring Steve Coleman, Jonathan Finlayson, and Anthony Tidd

The collision between Abstract Expressionism and jazz began in the galleries and clubs of New York in the 1940s, as avant-garde artists from each world learned more about each other. This connection pushed jazz in a more formal, intellectual direction exemplified by a number of thoughtful composer/performers. An heir to this great tradition is the Chicago composer, saxophone player and bandleader Steve Coleman, who has performed with the big bands of Thad Jones and Mel Lewis, Cecil Taylor, and Sam Rivers, released more than 25 records, and is a 2014 recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship. Coleman is joined by musicians and frequent collaborators Jonathan Finlayson (trumpet) and Anthony Tidd (bass).


Channel One

Exhibitions & Artist Interviews

Two Pulitzer Prize winners – comics artist and author Art Spiegelman and playwright Tony Kushner – discuss issues of authorship and identity through the lens of the exhibition Art Spiegelman's Co-Mix: A Retrospective.
A founding figure of the conceptual art movement of the 1960s and early 1970s, Mel Bochner has, for over the last decade, been creating paintings that riff on words drawn from the recent edition of Roget’s Thesaurus. This conversation with Chief Curator Norman Kleeblatt examines the history of Bochner’s work through the lens of the exhibition Mel Bochner: Strong Language. This program is offered as part of Dialogue and Discourse, a series of evening conversations inspired by current exhibitions, exploring artistic practice, global perspectives, and cultural issues.

Channel Two

Talks & Performances

International and local curators, including contributors to the exhibition catalogue, discuss the unconventional and nonconformist approaches to programming at their various institutions in a half-day symposium.
Performa Founding Director and Curator RoseLee Goldberg speak with Simon Dove about the languages of dance at the Jewish Museum in as part of the Dialogue and Discourse series.
Bella Meyer, granddaughter of artist Marc Chagall, shares her memories on the occasion of the revelatory exhibition Chagall: Love, War and Exile.
As Jack Goldstein’s instructor at CalArts in the early 1970s, John Baldessari greatly informed the late artist’s work. R. H. Quaytman continues the tradition of appropriation and mechanical reproduction. Baldessari and Quaytman share their reflections and impressions of Goldstein in this intergenerational dialogue moderated by Jens Hoffmann, The Jewish Museum’s Deputy Director for Exhibitions and Public Programs.
Influential feminist artist, author, and educator Judy Chicago reflects back on the creation of her work Rainbow Pickett, which was included in the original Primary Structures exhibition in 1966. Chicago will discuss how the artwork exemplifies the obstacles women artists faced in the art world of the 1960s and ‘70s.
Douglas Crimp, Critic and Fanny Knapp Allen Professor of Art History at the University of Rochester, and Jens Hoffmann, The Jewish Museum’s Deputy Director for Exhibitions and Public Programs discuss Goldstein as a pioneer of conceptual art practices.