The last exhibition of the Jewish Museum of Belgium before closing for construction works in late 2024, Passage reflects on the idea of transformation. It explores how the spiritual blends with the profane life, how the rite combines with the ordinary, and what happens when the collective and the intimate tie together.  

The exhibition consists of three complementary paths. The first immerses us in the universe of Charlemagne Palestine. In an installation entitled «AA BATT BEARR BARR MITZVAHH INN MESHUGAHLANDDD», the artist reinterprets the transition to adulthood in the Jewish tradition. In the tradition of schmattès, the Yiddish word for rags or second-hand clothes, he reinvents the gestures of collecting, sewing, and mending the fabric that mark the history of the Jewish worlds.

Echoing the fabric assemblages of Charlemagne Palestine, the second route proposes a dialogue around textiles, by crossing the collections of the Jewish Museum of Belgium, those of the Center of Judeo-Moroccan Culture, and the interventions of four contemporary artists: Jennifer Bornstein, Richard Moszkowicz, Elise Peroi, Arlette Vermeiren. This game of free-spirited associations reminds us that textile work is, in itself, a ritual practice and that women occupy a central place in it. It also shows that fabrics are never a mere adornment: alternately, they are places of memory, symbols of celebration, or accessions to the sacred.  

Through a performances program, the third path questions the contemporary resurgence of beliefs and rites. Hilal Aydoğdu, David Bernstein, Barbara Salomé Felgenhauer, and Zinaïda Tchelidze rethink the museum space to create an intimate and sensory laboratory, conducive to reflection and exchange.

A symbolic gesture, Passage is not only the end point of an exhibition program that has been running in this building for over twenty years. This exhibition questions the future Jewish Museum, which will also imagine new forms of passages.