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Tel Aviv to be Home to Museum of the Jewish People

Tel Aviv's Beit Hatfutsot, the Diaspora Museum, is being transformed thanks to an infusion from donors across the sea, and a new project.
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 12/4/2011, 11:06 AM

Ambassador Alfred Moses, Leonid Nevzlin
Ambassador Alfred Moses, Leonid Nevzlin
Mark Von Holden

Tel Aviv's Beit Hatfutsot is being transformed and reborn, thanks to an infusion from donors across the sea, and a new project developed together by people in the United States, Israel and elsewhere around the world.

The "Museum of the Jewish People," a project to be created at the Diaspora Museum, as it has been called for years by those abroad, received a boost last Thursday night at a gala fundraising dinner in Manhattan at which nearly $1 million was raised.

The 16,000 square meter museum will house a new permanent exhibition covering an area of 4,200 square meters spread out over three floors in Beit Hatfutsot's Nahum Goldmann building on the campus of Tel Aviv University.

The new museum is being planned as the largest experiential museum in Israel, and the first museum in the world to tell the story of the Jewish people from the Biblical patriarch Avraham through today "in a holistic manner."

In a statement to media, organizers said the aim is to "inspire in visitors a sense of belonging and connection to the overall Jewish story through a variety of narrative threads."

Nearly 500 guests from New York City and around the world attended the event, co-chaired by Eugene A. Ludwig and Leonid Nevzlin, chairman of the International Board of Governors of Beit Hatfutsot, the Museum of the Jewish People.

The new project is being supported through a joint effort of the museum and the NADAV Foundation, headed by Irina Nevzlin Kogan, Israel's government and various philanthropists around the world. NADAV, established in 2003 by Leonid Nevzlin, works to support initiatives that advance an understanding of Jewish peoplehood and create lasting connections among Jews throughout the world.