Past Exhibitions

Lawyers Without Rights: Jewish Lawyers in Germany after 1933

Detail of a Panel from "Lawyers without Rights"

In April 1933, shortly after the Nazis came to power, Jewish lawyers, judges, law professors, and civil servants throughout the judiciary system were disbarred and stripped of their right to practice law. The wide-ranging contributions of Jewish jurists in the late 19th and 20th century were disregarded.

Intriguing Women

Physician and biologist Rahel Hirsch, (1870-1943) in the laboratory.

The pioneering achievements of Jewish women in modern times cover a wide field-including social welfare, to the arts, to medicine and physics. The variety of their experiences is documented in letters, books, memoirs and other written materials in the archives of the LBI but is especially visible in the diverse imagery depicted in the Institute’s art collection.

Salon Paintings of the Leo Baeck Institute

This portrait of the children of an upper-middle class Jewish family was painted  in the 1920s by Adolf Ziegler, who would eventually become president of the Nazi Chamber of Art in 1936.

The exhibit will showcase works of such prominent artists as Max Liebermann, Lesser Ury, Julius Schulein, as well as works by artists who did not necessarily rise to prominence. The paintings evoke the contemporary Zeitgeist as well as the ever-changing status of the Jewish population from the 18th through the 20th centuries.

On Thin Ice: Jews in Salzburg

"Aryanization" Records

This exhibition was on display at the Museum Carolino Augusteum in 2002 and is now shown at the LBI with additional materials from the LBI’s collections.

September 18 – December 11, 2003.

Nahum Goldmann, Statesman without a State

Nahum Goldmann

Together with Chaim Waizmann and David Ben-Gurion, Goldmann helped create Israel, but never thought that a Jewish state was the answer for all Jews. Rather, Goldmann believed there must be vibrant Jewish organizations throughout the Diaspora and helped found the World Jewish Congress and the Conference of Jewish Organizations.

Leo Baeck: Theologian, Scholar, Teacher

Leo Baeck arriving at LaGuardia Airport, 1949

The life of Leo Baeck (1873-1956) has been documented several times through biographies, writings, and letters. But it is in his capacity as the last leader of a united German Jewry during the Nazi years, and in his unswerving commitment to serving that community’s organizational and spiritual needs, that we honor him in this exhibit.

Imprints: Selected works by Diane Samuels

Works by Diane Samuels

Diane Samuels, whose work is a centerpiece of the Great Hall of the Center for Jewish History creates are that deals with with language, text and context, using the letters of the alphabet to create alternative approaches to communication, both between ordinary people and as a link to the Divine. The exhibit includes projects from Germany, Slovakia, Poland, and the US.

Persecuting Grandfathers, Interviewing Grandsons? Austrian Gedenkdienst in New York


In 1995 the New York Leo Baeck Institute established a fascinating new project: Young Austrian conscientious objectors came to New York to do the equivalent of their military service by working at the Leo Baeck Institute interviewing Austrian refugees from their grandparents’ generation. These encounters have evolved into the Austrian Heritage Collection at LBI.

The Perils of Prominence: Jews in Berlin

Fritzi Massary in "Die Rose vom Stambul"

The social and political turmoil following Germany’s crushing defeat in World War I paved the way for daring innovations and profound changes in all areas of cultural and public life. Jews came to exemplify “modernity” in the Weimar Republic because so many Jewish artists, scientists, and entrepreneurs were on the forefront of change.

Credit Due: Eight German-Jewish Artists Persecuted by the Nazis


This exhibit takes a close look at the experiences various artists underwent prior to their emigration and explores the phenomenon of emigration itself as an existential experience. The lives of these artists are as diverse as their artistic styles, but there are some commonalities: Most went from country to country, often unable to secure work or the right to stay.