INTERVIEW: A Conversation with Dr. Batsheva Ida

(Please see below my interview with Tel Aviv Museum of Art Curator Dr. Batsheva Ida, who also accompanied us during the excellent tour I took of TAMA, which I reviewed here.  Enjoy!)

The Tel Aviv Museum of Art at night.  Photograph by the author.

I On the Arts:  What is your job at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art? 

Dr. Batsheva Ida: Curator of Special Projects.

IOtA:  How did you get involved in museum work? 

BI: I initially worked as an intern for the Jewish Federation in Chicago just out of college when they participated in the Bicentennial Jewish Exhibit (1976).

IOtA:  What is your artistic background? 

BI: My M.A. and Ph.D are in Art History.

IOtA: When did you get involved in studying art and museums? 

BI: After working on the Bicentennial Jewish Exhibition, which took place at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, I began working as an intern and on a project basis for a variety of museum-related jobs – in the Manuscripts Division of the Chicago Historical Society; in a synagogue survey for the Spertus Museum of Chicago; and as a free-lance PR writer for the Art Institute of Chicago. Then, upon coming to Israel in 1977, I was hired within a month as Assistant Curator of Judaica at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, where I worked for the next four years.

IOtA:  What is your favorite show you've helped to exhibit? 

BI: In 2009, I recreated an exhibition of Jewish artists that took place in Berlin in 1907, entitled "Fragmented Mirror." 

IOtA:  What is the most rewarding part of your job? 

BI: I like multi-tasking and also the process of synthesis needed to create the exhibition concept.

IOtA: What advice do you have for someone interested in a museum career? 

BI: Try and volunteer or intern as much as possible. 

IOtA:  What is your favorite kind of art? 

BI: Fine art – painting and sculpture.

IOtA:  What project, artist or museum/gallery has you most excited right now? 

BI: Now I am working on a show to open next July 2014, which juxtaposes works by Frank Stella from his Polish Village Series (1970-73) and a rare collection of the museum of synagogue photographs and drawings, the Alois Breyer Collection. This will be the first time the Breyer Collection has been shown to the public since 1941, and the Stella works are an example of how the unique architecture influenced contemporary artists.


  1. Nice that she was willing to do an interview for you to have an addendum to your review. :)


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