format 22 x 31 cm, 376 pp., hardback in a case
500 full-colour illustrations of textile items (100
The Jewish Museum in Prague has published a de luxe
catalogue of synagogue textiles from its collections for the exhibition
„For Dignity and Adornment“ at the Imperial Stables, Prague Castle (March–June
2003). The catalogue texts and illustrations cover most of the textiles
presented at the exhibition, as well as other select examples of the
rich diversity of the Museum’s textile holdings, amounting to a thousand
items. Moreover, they broaden the scope of information on individual
groups of textiles by adding other striking examples. The wide variety
of the collection is reflected in 500 full-colour illustrations.
The introductory part of the catalogue comprises texts by Museum staff
and other experts. The initial essay by Ludmila Kybalová deals with
the history, structure and basic working of the textile collection.
Other essays cover the following areas: the specific symbols of Moravian
synagogue textiles (Dana Veselská), valances and their specific iconography
(Dana Veselská and Michaela Scheibová), textiles of oriental provenance
(Markéta Procházková), fabrics of Chinese provenance (Zlata Černá),
the historical background of donors (Alexandr Putík), the development
of Hebrew dedicatory inscriptions and the contemporary use of Czech
and German inscriptions (Jiřina Šedinová), the donation of synagogue
textiles as reflected in epitaphs (Vlastimila Hamáčková), the restoration
of textiles at the Jewish Museum in Prague (Veronika Nauschová and Helena
Votočková), and the identification of collection points (Magda Veselská).
The following, extensive, part of the catalogue covers synagogue textile
items – curtains, Torah mantles, valances and covers. Catalogue entries
also include the name of the donor and information on the place from
where the item came.
The catalogue ends with a glossary of Hebrew terms and an index of names
The catalogue will definitely be an indispensable source for experts
dealing with Jewish material culture and for specialists responsible
for textile collections at specialized museums around the world. Familiarity
with the textile collection of the Jewish Museum in Prague will undoubtedly
enrich the quality of research to date. It may also be assumed that
this catalogue will be a useful source for the general public - artists,
designers, teachers, students of various disciplines, and lovers of
art in general.
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