Jewish Identity Project: New American Photography

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Jewish Identity Project: New American Photography

Ten newly commissioned projects examine the complexities of contemporary Jewish American identity

While American Jews are commonly considered a homogenous ethnic group, the reality today is far more complex. Conversion, adoption, intermarriage, and immigration have transformed the fabric of Jewish communities, as they have the United States as a nation. This fascinating book explores questions of American Jewish identity and how Jews fit today into larger discourses of race, ethnicity, and religion. Featuring ten photographic and video projects by emerging and mid-career artists, all commissioned by The Jewish Museum, the book presents a range of provocative discussions of the nature of Jewish identity in 21st-century America.

Susan Chevlowe discusses how the artists explore individual communities to dispel stereotypes of contemporary Jewish life, and Ilan Stavans dissects the diversity of American Jews over the last century. In illuminating interviews with the artists, Joanna Lindenbaum provides insights into their ideas and methods. A beautifully illustrated portfolio of each of the commissioned works immerses the viewer in a distinctive community, revealing complex and often surprising ways in which Jewish Americans grapple with their identity.

Participating artists:

- Dawoud Bey

- Tirtza Even and Brian Karl

- Rainer Ganahl

- Nikki S. Lee

- Yoshua Okon

- Jaime Permuth

- Andrea Robbins and Max Becher

- Shari Rothfarb and Avishai Mekonen

- Jessica Shokrian

- Chris Verene

Publication Date: 
November 1, 2005