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Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience Honored by Southeastern Museum Conference with Three Awards


NEW ORLEANS (press release) – The Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience (MSJE) is pleased to announce they are the recipients of two Gold and one Bronze award in the areas of exhibitions and technology at the 2021 Southeastern Museums Conference, the largest regional museum conference in the South.

  • MSJE received the Gold Award, the highest designation, in the “Over $1,000,000 Budget” category of the 2021 SEMC Exhibition Competition for their opening core exhibition
  • In the 2021 SEMC Technology Competition, MSJE received the top Gold Award in the “Gallery Installations” category for their Community Quilt Interactive
  • Also in the 2021 SEMC Technology Competition, the orientation film was honored with the Bronze Award in the “Media Production” category.

“We are thrilled to be recognized by our peers in the museum industry,” said executive director Kenneth Hoffman, “and I am particularly proud of the creativity and hard work of our staff and of our design partners, Gallagher & Associates and Cortina Productions. Weaving more than 300 years of Southern Jewish experiences into engaging, accessible, and relevant exhibits–during a pandemic, no less–was quite an adventure.”

MSJE’s opening core exhibition, honored with the top designation in the “Over $1,000,000 Budget” category in the SEMC Exhibition Competition, features the diverse experiences of Jews in the American South from Colonial times to today. Through interactive exhibits, artifacts, and stories, the core exhibition explores themes that connect visitors of all backgrounds, including immigration and civil rights.

MSJE’s award-winning Community Quilt interactive experience is based on a quilt from the Museum collection that was stitched in 1885 by the Jewish Ladies Sewing Circle of Canton, Mississippi. Visitors use a touch screen to express their own identity and communities using custom fabrics, patches and drawing tools to craft their own unique square. When complete, guests “stitch” their patch into the museum’s community quilt to create one beautiful canvas from disparate elements – a perfect metaphor for not only the Southern Jewish experience, but also the American experience.

Curator Anna Tucker represented MSJE at the SEMC Museum Technology Showcase on Oct. 26, 2021. SEMC Exhibition award winners were celebrated at the 2021 Annual Meeting Awards Ceremony on October 27, 2021 in Chattanooga, Tennessee and will be featured in the Fall 2021 Edition of INSIDE SEMC, a digital publication of the Southeastern Museums Conference. This designation recognizes Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience’s contribution to professional standards in Southeastern museums.


About The Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience:

The Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience in New Orleans explores the many ways that Jews in the American South influenced and were influenced by the distinct cultural heritage of their new homes. Through exhibits, collections and programs focused on the unique and remarkable history of Southern Jews, the Museum encourages new understanding and appreciation for identity, diversity, and acceptance. Visit www.msje.org for more information or follow the Museum on Facebook and Twitter.


About the Southeastern Museums Conference:

The Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC), a nonprofit membership organization, is an association of museums, museum staff, independent professionals and corporate partners. We focus on the Southeastern United State including: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Puerto Rico, and US Virgin Islands.




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