New York, NY, December 23, 2019 — Claudia Gould, Helen Goldsmith Menschel Director, The Jewish Museum, announced today that Abigail Rapoport will become the Jewish Museum’s Curator of Judaica, beginning her new role on January 21, 2020.
At the Jewish Museum, Ms. Rapoport will work with Ms. Gould; Darsie Alexander, Susan and Elihu Rose Chief Curator; Claudia J. Nahson, Morris and Eva Feld Senior Curator; and other members of the Jewish Museum’s curatorial team to advance the mission of one of the world’s preeminent institutions devoted to exploring art and Jewish culture, from ancient to contemporary. Ms. Rapoport will use her expertise to oversee the Jewish Museum’s Judaica collection and create original exhibitions and programs. She will also manage Judaica acquisitions, and collaborate with Education staff to develop interpretive approaches to exhibitions.
Ms. Rapoport arrives at the Jewish Museum from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, where she was Research Associate for Judaica responsible for expanding the Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts’ Judaica collection. While at The Met, she collaborated with other curatorial departments and created programming and digital content which brought greater attention to the Judaica collection and objects related to Jewish culture.
Claudia Gould said, “We are delighted to welcome Abigail to the Jewish Museum in this vital position. With stewardship over our extraordinary collection of Judaica, Abigail brings a combination of deep scholarship and artistic sensitivity to this role. I am eager to embrace her ideas and energy as a valued member of the Museum’s curatorial team.”
Darsie Alexander commented, “We are impressed by Abigail’s capacity to make compelling connections between objects emanating from Jewish traditions and today’s diverse cultural reality. We anticipate advancing her vision for the Jewish Museum’s collection and the exhibitions it generates.”
Abigail Rapoport said, “I am honored to be joining the talented team at the Jewish Museum and to have this opportunity to build upon the work of my groundbreaking predecessors, including Dr. Susan L. Braunstein and the late Dr. Vivian B. Mann. I am especially excited to contribute to the curatorial, scholarly, and educational activities centered on the Jewish Museum’s renowned collection of Judaica. Together with my colleagues, I look forward to advancing the curatorial vision of the Museum.”
Prior to working at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Ms. Rapoport served in a variety of curatorial and research roles at an auction house and major museums, including the Morgan Library & Museum, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem. She worked for two years at a Success Academy Charter School through Teach for America, where she designed and implemented an art history course. Among other museum internships she has held, Ms. Rapoport was a Curatorial Intern at the Jewish Museum in the summer of 2012.
Ms. Rapoport is completing her doctorate at the University of Pennsylvania where she studied and wrote on topics of Judaica, medieval art, and seventeenth-century Dutch painting. Her dissertation examines iconography related to the Mosaic Covenant within Jewish and Christian communities in the High Middle Ages, especially across illuminated manuscripts and metalwork. She received her MA in art history from the University of Pennsylvania, and a BA in art history from Barnard College.