Halftime for (the) GOLEM — What Do Our Visitors Have to Say?

A white room with drawings on the walls and a mirror in the center

View of a room of the exhibition GOLEM; Jewish Museum Berlin, photo: Yves Sucksdorff

Laura (23), Romania, architecture student

What is your impression of the exhibition?

The exhibition is fascinating and creepy at the same time. It makes you believe that the creatures displayed are real. Therefore, the atmosphere is very intense.

Which object or room has impressed you the most?

The room with the mirrors impressed me a lot. First, we were just playing around, which was fun. I could see myself and my friend in the mirror at the same time. But when I think of it now, it could be a metaphor for “looking beyond yourself.”

Do you know a sort of “Golem” from today?

As children, we have toys, dolls, and sometimes imaginary friends. We can talk to them and make them do what we want them to do.

Edgar (49), Germany, computer science

What was your impression of the exhibition?

I thought that the term “Golem” was too broad here and was applied too extensively. For example, I didn’t understand what the doppelgänger motif had to do with the history of golems.

Exhibition room with larger than life-sized human figure lying on the floor

View into the exhibition room on Jewish mysticism with Joshua Abarbanel’s Golem sculpture made from Hebrew letters, Jewish Museum Berlin, photo: Yves Sucksdorff

Which object or room appealed to you in particular?

The Golem lying down, the one composed of many Hebrew letters, struck me as the one that fit best to the history of the figure. I come from the sciences so I really like the functionality of that object, along the lines of “put a letter in — do something.”

Who or what do you think is a kind of Golem today?

Strong leadership personalities, people who control things and eliminate inequities

Nazarena (45), USA, business development

What’s your impression of the exhibition?

You have created the perfect ambiance. It’s so mystical. I feel enchanted. The artwork is amazing.

Which of the rooms or objects appealed to you the most?

The room where the paintings hang differently. It’s like if they are “floating” on the walls. It caused a big impression on me. I love the art in black and white. It’s very dark.

What fascinates you about the Golem story?

I was fascinated by the fact that humans created something in order to be closer to God. At the same time this is a contradiction to religion, as God is the one who creates. I’m not Jewish — I didn’t know about the Golem before. Now, after I’ve seen this exhibition, I will buy a book and get more into it.

Red room with three-part film screen

Eight-minute film installation on the subject of the Golem, with selections from over 60 feature films, Jewish Museum Berlin, photo: Yves Sucksdorff

Julia (20), Germany, German and Slavic studies student,
Leonid (20), Germany, Comparative literature student

What room or object appealed to you in particular?

Julia: I really liked the room with the Golem lying on the floor. The mise-en-scène and this emptiness had an incredible effect.

Leonid: I had a few favorites. One of them was the set of chrysalis. For me they were the most understandable artwork because they showed the moment of transformation most clearly. I also found the three-part film wall great. It’s rare to see such beautifully arranged film scenes, all depicting the same plot.

To whom would you recommend the Golem Exhibition?

Julia: I would recommend it to anyone interested in how this one material can be treated across such a range of media and understood so differently too.

Leonid: A friend of mine studies game design. He would definitely really enjoy the last room of the exhibition.

David Studniberg recommends that film fans plan plenty of time for their visit to the exhibition.
The exhibition GOLEM will continue through January 29, 2017. (further information on our website).

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