The Center for Jewish Art is happy to announce a cooperative project with the Russian State Library in Moscow. In the framework of the project, the books of the Schneersohn Collection – the library of the fifth and sixth Rebbes of Lubavitch – will be examined for decorations and illustrations. The pages with such elements will be included in the Bezalel Narkiss Index of Jewish Art and provided with the appropriate metadata and, most importantly, with the proper iconographical references linking them to the thesaurus of iconographical subjects, developed by the researchers of the Center for Jewish Art.
Printed books in Hebrew type are one of the most important sources of the study of Jewish art and culture, which have gone through the hands of thousands of people in various parts of the Jewish diaspora. Images in printed books have influenced Jewish artists and have served as models for the decoration of ritual objects, tombstones, synagogue walls and even manuscripts.
This is a pilot project, from which we hope to develop a larger one, aiming at including all decorations and illustrations from Jewish books in the Index of Jewish Art. The first dozen books have already been included in the Index and can be viewed here.