Complementing the many music performances, the Violins of Hope residency will include three fascinating and insightful public exhibitions.
Central to the exhibitions will be A Journey of Heroism, Healing and Humanity presented at the San Francisco War Memorial Veterans Building in cooperation with the American Legion War Memorial Commission, with special assistance from San Francisco State University’s Global Museum and the Helen and Joe Farkas Center for the Study of the Holocaust in Catholic Schools. Plans call for a display of 26 violins from the collection, sharing stories of their difficult history and emotional journey toward their restoration in addition to relevant ephemera about the Holocaust.
RR, a sculpture by Daniel Hawkins
In RR, an 8-foot segment of a railroad including gravel, railroad ties, and steel rails is set between two vertical panes of two-way mirrored Plexiglas. When viewing the artwork from its mirrored ends, the illusion is created of a railroad extending into infinity, yet when walking around its open sides the image collapses back into tactility. The railroad track as a symbol is loaded with narrative and historical qualities, including its role as an essential structural lifeline to the western United States in the early-to-mid 20th century while simultaneously being a structural path to death in Europe during the Holocaust. This filmic sculpture is a sort of fun house diorama of an infinite stretch of railroad tracks, with the bells and whistles exposed — the great technological agent of manifest destiny collapsed into an obvious fiction.
The Peninsula Jewish Community Center will present a special photography exhibition by Daniel Levin, The Weinsteins’ Workshop: The Luthiers Who Restored the Violins of the Holocaust, offering an insider’s perspective into Weinsteins’ eclectic workshop and forensic-like approach to restoring these Holocaust-era strings.
In Los Gatos at the New Museum (NUMU), In the Artist’s Studio: The Violin Workshop of Amnon and Avshalom Weinstein will offer a recreation of the Weinstein’s atelier in Tel Aviv.
All three exhibitions will offer unique educational opportunities for students, social justice and faith-based organizations, and congregations to learn about this period of systematic hatred and bigotry in order to prevent this from re-occurring locally and globally. Related exhibits will bring context and focus to the Bay Area’s history on human rights campaigns, contemporary issues of injustice, racial and religious discrimination and the horrors of genocide.