“A Challenge to Oblivion: Restoration.”

Dear friends!

On 20 September 2019 the Museum of Jewish History in Russia opened a new temporary exhibit entitled “A Challenge to Oblivion: Restoration.”

This small exhibit is highly representative of the museum’s work. It is devoted entirely to the efforts of our staff to rescue and restore artifacts within the conceptual framework of the museum. Such an endeavor always means a race against time, a difficult contest that can nevertheless sometimes be won.

The items selected for the exhibit are illustrative not only of the aesthetics and cultural traditions of East European Jewry, but also of the objectives of our museum. “A Challenge to Oblivion” presents us with the opportunity to declare that rescuing and preserving unique specimens of the Jewish cultural and artistic heritage comprises one of the top priorities of the museum’s activity. All items on display represent the result of painstaking research and restoration work.

Examples include restored fragments of a late-nineteenth-century interior, rescued in its entirety from a synagogue in the town of Odobesti (Romanian Moldavia), and late-eighteenth-century carved doors salvaged from a collapsing synagogue in the town of Chortkov (present-day – Ukrainian Galicia). The exhibit also presents surviving pieces of Jewish gravestones, as well as ritual objects not previously put on display.

Each item on display is accompanied by a history of its rescue and preservation.

We would like to express heartfelt gratitude to our restorers:

Ludmila Dronova – wood;

Tatiana Cherkasova – fabric;

Vasily Cherkasov – metal, wood;

Yekaterina Solovieva – paper;

Anastasia Makarova – stone.

The exhibit may be viewed during the opening hours of the Museum of Jewish History in Russia.