Istanbul to celebrate Jewish culture day

Istanbul’s Jewish community invites the city’s residents and visitors to learn about Jewish culture on Oct. 7, with the Turkish Jewish Society organizing a series of events in honor of the European Day of Jewish Culture.

The event will be celebrated simultaneously in 30 countries around the world.

Each year an international committee selects one overarching theme for the event, and this year’s theme is Jewish humor. To honor this theme, the Istanbul events will include two cartoon exhibitions, one at the Schneidertempel Art Center featuring works by Izel Rozental, the cartoonist of the Jewish daily Shalom, and the second with work by Irvin Mendel, displayed in the entrance hall of Neve Shalom Synagogue.

A one-day exhibition including two works by the well-known Turkish Jewish painter and sculptor Suzy Hug Levy will also be displayed in Neve Shalom’s front yard. “I always work in the context of the exhibition venue,” Levy said. “So when I was commissioned for the show I thought about on what occasions I visit the synagogue. I go there for either weddings or funerals. Therefore my works will focus on these subjects.”

The event will also feature an exhibition of work by the celebrated Turkish photographer Izzet Kehribar at the Schneidertempel Art Center. Jewish Culture Day events will also include seminars, concerts and a demonstration of a Bar Mitzvah ceremony, as well as a cultural tour of Jewish cultural heritage sites, including synagogues in the Haskoy neighborhood of Beyoglu district that will be opened especially for the occasion.

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