To make the future you must preserve the past. Museums are the key means to achieve this core of civilisation. Construction will finally commence this year of 2022 on the future Jewish Museum of Lisbon. It will not only present the timeline of the Jewish presence in the capital of Portugal, but also its traditions and culture ranging from the Roman era to the present day. “A history of longevity and plural cultures lending a specific character to Portuguese Judaism”, as summed up for the media by Esther Mucznik, president of Hagadá – the private association responsible for installing and running the very first Jewish Museum in Lisbon, named Tikvá.
Originally planned for Alfama, it moved to Rua das Hortas in Belém, and grew in size and ambition, covering approximately four thousand square metres. The name Hope was given by Daniel Libeskind, the architect who created the project, who believes that architecture is a humanist discipline based on history and tradition. Indeed, in his works he shares the importance of the past with what we are today, rather than just transmitting the past. The art of Daniel Libeskind, for whom memory is the basis of architecture and the key to his work, transmits precisely those hopes for the future. His partner is Portugal is the architectural practice Saraiva + Associados, and it is hoped that the Tikva Museum will open in 2024.
According to the Tikva Museu Judaico Lisboa website, “The museological programme consists of a permanent exhibition which will be complemented by temporary exhibitions. The permanent exhibition has two parts: • Jewish culture and traditions • A historic route organised chronologically and thematically with 5 nuclei”; Jewish Culture and Traditions, Historic Signs, A Time of Cohabitation, A Time of Intolerance, The Jewish-Portuguese Diaspora, Contemporary Resurgence. “The collections serve as the basis for the permanent exhibition and will be the medium of the story that the museum will tell, as well as the privileged means of information and disclosure regarding the long and abundant life of the Portuguese Jews”; also: “The museum collects and preserves many items, documenting relevant aspects of Jewish life in Portugal, focusing particularly on Lisbon, over the centuries”. The Jewish Museum of Lisbon is receptive to support by means of bequests, testimonies, donations and sponsorships, to name just a few.