France / Alsace


Synagogue of Bouxwiller. Photo by Olivier Lévy – Wikipedia

Housed in a synagogue built in 1842, the unique  Judeo-Alsatian Museum (Musée Judéo-Alsacien) set out to present the life and history of Judaism in the countryside. There are no rich collections here, therefore, but a sequence of displays with re-creations and moving, ritual objects reflecting ordinary life and the major moments of Jewish life in Alsace. The building’s empty interior -the Nazis converted it into a factory- allows for a unique architectural experience. It contains a sequence of ramps and platforms that permit visitors to share in the traditions of the Jewish hawkers and wholesale butchers of the countryside. Mannequins with heads in twisted iron and ceramic models also bring to life these lost communities.