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Friends of the Israel Museum

Friends of the Israel Museum


The generosity of our international family of friends helps us to provide the rich program of exhibitions, publications, and special events that have become the Israel Museum's hallmark, and which ensure our continued standing as one of the world's leading museums. Contributions to the Israel Museum are tax-deductible in Israel. If you require a receipt for tax deduction in a country other than Israel, please consider directing your gift through one of our International Friends associations



Israel Museum International Council 2022


Together again! The Israel Museum, Jerusalem International Council 2022

Monday, June 6 – Wednesday, June 8, 2022 | Click here for more details


Friends of the Israel Museum: Annual Gifts

ISRAEL MUSEUM INTERNATIONALS (IMJIs) make up the Israel Museum's global network of young leaders, with active chapters in the United States, Brazil, Canada, and England. IMJIs are invited to exclusive art weekends and events around the world. To join, please contact your local Friends chapters.

DONORS ($2,000) are listed in the Israel Museum Journal, and are invited to events with their local Friends chapters.

INTERNATIONAL PATRONS ($3,000) are listed in the Israel Museum Journal and receive invitations to international events around the world, as well as an International Art Pass entitling free entry to North American and European museums.

GUARDIANS ($7,500) sponsor a week in honor of a person or occasion of your choice, subsidizing entrance fees for children, students, soldiers, disabled persons, and senior citizens. Guardians also receive all benefits of Patrons.


Friends of the Israel Museum: Cumulative Gifts

Cumulative gifts totaling $100,000 or more are recognized in the three special categories:

Sponsors ($100,000 - $249,999)

Benefactors ($250,000 - $999,000)

Founders ($1,000,000 upwards)

Contributors' receive all donor benefits and their names are permanently inscribed in the Museum's Donor Court and are listed in each edition of the Israel Museum Journal. 

If you are interested in pursuing possible avenues of involvement, please contact the Department for for International Relations and Development, at or +972-2-6708827.




·  12/09/2019 - IMJ Insider | Fall 2019

   15/01/2019 - IMJ Insider | Winter 2019

   09/06/2018 - IMJ Insider | Fall 2018

·  04/26/2018 - IMJ Insider | Spring 2018

·  07/10/2017 - IMJ Insider | Summer 2017

·  02/27/2017 - IMJ Insider | Winter 2017


·  06/1/2018 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | June 2018

·  01/10/2018 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | January 2018

·  11/20/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | November 2017

·  09/12/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | September 2017

·  08/15/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | August 2017

·  07/13/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | July 2017

·  06/15/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | June 2017

·  05/29/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | May 2017

·  04/30/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | April 2017

·  03/20/2017 - IMJ Leadership Newsflash | March 2017

IMJI Newsflash

18/01/2018 - IMJI Newsflash | January 2018

01/11/2017 - IMJI Newsflash | October 2017


   Friends of the Israel Museum on Instagram      

Focus on our Friends

The amazing success story of the Israel Museum can be attributed to our ever-growing network of International Friends who support our activities in a number of ways. Here are some highlights of Friends events around the world.

South African Friends (SAFIM)

This year's SAFIM gala was held in Cape Town at the Moondance Villa on November 13th. The diverse selection of art, expertly auctioned by Strauss & Co, piqued the guests' interest. Over one hundred guests attended, including honored guests Prof. Ido Bruno and James Snyder. Proceeds from the event support worthy art initiatives both in South Africa and in the Israel Museum’s Youth Wing.

During the SAFIM VIP Program at Investec Cape Town Art Fair, 2018, friends were welcomed to a tailor-made, complimentary experience that culminated in SAFIM's annual VIP Opening Day Tour of the Fair, expertly led by Gordon Radowsky. SAFIM’s VIP Members’ Program at the FNB Joburg Art Fair featured a curated walkabout of stand-out booths with art-specialist, Phillippa Duncan. Members enjoyed exclusive talks by artists and the chance to meet gallerists and fellow collectors. In addition, SAFIM Johannesburg launched its Collaboration series at The Social Kitchen & Bar, Hyde Park. Part one of this series of artistic collaborations featured Jonathan Freemantle; artist and co-founder of Hazard Gallery, Artist, and two young emerging artists, Jake Singer and Pebofatso Moekena.  

American Friends (AFIM)

The American Friends of the Israel Museum Gala took place at the Plaza Hotel on October 29, 2018 in New York City.

Photo by Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

AFIM’s annual Gala, chaired by Pamela Sanders and Orna Stern, took place on October 29th at The Plaza, and raised over $1.7.  The evening featured remarks by artist Thomas Demand as well as a special performance by Tony Award winner Ari’el Stachel from The Band’s Visit and surprise guest appearance by award winning Israeli actor Sasson Gabay. 


Canadian Friends (CFIM)

Pictured left to right: James Snyder, Director Emeritus of the Israel Museum; Elliot and Wendy Eisen, CFIM National Co-Chairs; and Prof. Ido Bruno, Director of the Israel Museum.

On August 21, the Canadian Friends of the Israel Museum held their 3rd "one night only" Pop-Up Museum. Over 250 people attended the event, held for the first time at Toronto’s pre-eminent luxury design store, ELTE.  The event, curated by David Moos, featured 30 artworks– including works by Rodney Graham, Henri Matisse, and Robert Motherwell – on loan from more than twenty of Toronto's finest art collections. Renee and Ken Metrick generously hosted the event, which brought together fellow lovers of art and Israel. The event raised funds for free entrance to the Israel Museum for Israeli children.

On Sunday, October 28, CFIM hosted 60 people for a private breakfast and behind-the-scenes tour of Art Toronto, Canada’s largest international fair for modern and contemporary art. Guests were treated to presentations by four galleries and the tour was expertly led by Toronto art consultant and CFIM Associate, Jessica Yakubowicz Herzig.


Italian Friends (AIMIG)

The Italian Friends of the Israel Museum organized a weeklong tour in Israel, led by Davide Blei, AIMIG President; and Myriam Volterra, AIMIG Council member. On Sunday, November 4, 2018, the group visited the Israel Museum. They enjoyed curator led tours of the Shrine of the Book with Lizbeth and George Krupp Curator of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Head of the Shrine of the Book, Dr. Adolfo Roitman; the Billy Rose Art Garden with Shua Ben Ari, the Jewish Art and Life Wing with Storage and Collection Manager, Gioia Perugia; exhibition tour of Fashion Statements: Decoding Israeli Dress with Associate Curator, Stella Fischbach Department of Modern Art , Noga Eliash-Zalmanovich; and a tour of the Israeli Art Gallery with Aya Miron, Curator, The David Orgler Israeli Art Department. 

During their visit to Israel, the AIMIG's group was graciously hosted by members of the Association of Israeli Friends of the Israel Museum.

During October, AIMIG organized a trip for the 16th Architecture Biennale in Venice. Nineteen people attended from six different countries. Highlights included tours of the 10 Chaples in the Wood, commissioned by the Vatican, on San Giorgio Island; the great glass exhibition of M.V.M Cappellin Glassworks and the Young Carlo Scarpa 1925-1931; tours of the Jewish Museum, Venice Ghetto, and Synagogues by the curator of the Jewish Museum of Venice; a guided tour by Riccardo Calimani, the most important writer of the history of Italian Jews; the Tintoretto exhibition, both at Palazzo Ducale and Gallerie dell’Accademia; and prestigious dinners hosted by Museum friends in their exquisite Venetian residences, surrounded by the wondrous view of the Canal Grande. 

French Friends (Les Amis)

The French Friends hosted a 3 day trip to Paris in November, which included the Les Amis annual Gala, private visits to galleries and collections, as well as exclusive tours. Israel Museum friends came from France, Switzerland, Belgium, Spain, Israel and the United States.

Over two hundred guests attended the Gala Dinner and live auction which was held at the renewed Pavillon Gabriel. Dinners were hosted by collectors Hélène Nguyen-Ban and Frédéric and Véronique Chiche. Among the locations visited by the Museum's friends during the trip: The Manufacture de Sèvres, Centre Pompidou, VNH Gallery, Grand Palais, Fondation Louis Vuitton, and the Musée d’Art moderne. The group enjoyed a visit with artist Adel Abdessemed, and was honored by the special opening of Gallery Gerard Levy by Gérard Lévy's family. The visit was very moving, as Gérard Lévy was a longtime and close supporter of the Israel Museum.


German Friends 

From left to right: Shimon Stein, Dr. Gisela Dachs, Daniel Kühnel, Melody Sucharewicz and Dr. h.c. Sonja Lahnstein

The German Friends of the Israel Museum held its 18th "Bridging the Gap" dialogue event. Dedicated to major issues of the 21st century, the successful "Bridging the Gap" dialogue series is based on values of the enlightenment, and stands for the possibility of an understanding across borders and opposites. The series aims to build bridges, reduce prejudices, and help counteract conflicts.

This year's event, titled "Who owns Jerusalem? A place of longing and a place of explosion. Where is the future?" was held on October 23, 2018, in Hamburg. Over 400 people attended. The evening was moderated by Dr. h.c. Sonja Lahnstein-Kandel, Chairman of the German Friends of the Israel Museum. Prof. Dr. Michael Göring, Chairman of the ZEIT Foundation Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius, introduced the event. Guests included Dr. Gisela Dachs, journalist and longtime ZEIT correspondent in Israel; Daniel Kühnel, art historian and artistic director of the Symphoniker Hamburg; Shimon Stein, former Israeli Ambassador in Germany; and Melody Sucharewicz, International Relations Advisor to political and private institutions in Germany and Israel.

The German Friends and the ZEIT Foundation Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius will continue the successful dialogue series in 2019.


Israeli Friends (IFIM)

Left to right: Director Ido Bruno; Tamara Yovel-Jones, Alber Elbaz, Lea Rotstein
Photo: Eli Posner

The Israeli Friends of the Israel Museum held their annual Artishuk Gala event on October 15, 2018. This year's theme was inspired by the Museum's Fashion Statements: Decoding Israeli Dress, an exhibition initiated by Tamara Yovel-Jones. The Gala program included short TED-style talks in the auditorium and behind-the-scenes tours of the Museum galleries with curators. Over 450 guests from Israel and abroad attended the vibrant event.

Proceeds from the evening were donated to the Museum’s educational activities for IDF soldiers and youth.


British Friends of the Art Museums of Israel (BFAMI)

London Design Biennale

The British Friends visited the Israeli Pavilion at the London Design Biennale – a co-production of the Israel Museum, Jerusalem and Shankar College of engineering. The Viewing included a Curator led tour of the Exhibition Exposed Nerves followed by a Q&A with Israeli Designers and moderated by Maïa Morgensztern. 

Swiss Friends

The Swiss Friends of the Israel Museum held an auction and Gala dinner on the 26th of November.

185 guests enjoyed the event, where an Israeli chef prepared a fantastic Middle Eastern/North African themed menu, the Afro-beat jazz group Quarter to Africa (direct from Tel Aviv) performed with guests dancing until nearly midnight, the auction was a great success, raising large sums for the Museum, including 36 scholarships sold to send under-privileged kids to yearlong art classes at the Museum.

In attendance were His Excellency the Ambassador of Israel to Switzerland, Mr. Jacob Keidar and Dr. Keidar. As well as Honorary President Werner Merzbacher, and the past Presidents of the Swiss Friends – Vera and Didier Bollag, Dr. David Jeselsohn, and Dr. Ellen Ringier. Director of the Israel Museum, Prof. Ido Bruno; Director Emeritus, James Snyder; Council Co-Chair, Marion Naggar; President of the Italian Friends, Davide Blei; and German Friends Chairman, Sonja Lahnstein Kandel also attended.

Brazilian Friends (AABIM)

On November 13th, the Museum's Brazilian Friends were visited in San Paulo by Dr. Adolfo Roitman of the Israel Museum. Dr. Roitman, Lizbeth and George Krupp Curator of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Head of the Shrine of the Book, gave a lecture on The Israel Museum as a Secular National Temple.





Limited Editions Commissioned by the Israel Museum


At the time of the Israel Museum’s 40th Anniversary in 2005, International Council Co-Chair Marion Naggar looked for a way of honoring and supporting the Museum while strengthening its connections with contemporary artists. This resulted in the creation of signed limited edition works by internationally known contemporary artists which were sold for the benefit of the Museum – helping it maintain its prestigious status as one of the world's leading encyclopaedic museums. 
The first artist to generously agree to participate was Damien Hirst followed by Yinka Shonibare, Ron Arad, Liza Lou, William Kentridge, Arik Lévy and Jeff Koons, all of whom are represented in the Museum’s collection. Most recently, in celebration of his acclaimed 2017 exhibition at the Israel Museum Maybe, Maybe Not, Chinese artist Ai Weiwei created Hands without Bodies – the ninth sculpture in this exclusive limited edition series. 

To purchase a limited edition of any of the works below, please contact Carina Auerbach at, +972-2-670-8890


Hands without Bodies, 2017, Ai Weiwei 

Porcelain, life-sized (approx. 50 x 20 cm), edition of 50.
Price: $50,000

Celebrating his acclaimed 2017 exhibition at the Israel Museum Maybe, Maybe Not, Ai Weiwei has created Hands without Bodies, the ninth in a series of limited edition artworks initiated in 2005 by International Council Co-Chair Marion Naggar. 

This life-sized work, in celadon-glazed porcelain, reflects the artist's deep belief that the future of humanity relies on the strength of connections between people. This ideal is something which very much resonates with the philosophy and mandate of our Museum which welcomes all sectors of the population regardless of age, background, religion, ethnicity, or special needs. 



Illusion, 2014,  Arik Levy

Series of unique, mouth-blown sculptured vases in silvered and colored art glass (40 x 20 cm).

  • The silver vase is an edition of 40 + 2 APs, priced at $10,000
  • The colored vase is part of an edition of 20 + 2 APs, priced at $15,000 (excluding VAT and shipping).

All pieces will be signed by the artist and issued a certificate of authenticity.

Illusion, the sixth in the Israel Museum’s exclusive commissions of limited editions by leading contemporary artists to benefit the Museum, investigates the relationship between solid and liquid, existence and absence, clarity and deformation. Its appearance forever evolving, this sculpture never looks the same twice. Perpetual interaction with the light and space result in a unique sculpture – in the artist’s view, a unique spirit like every person.

Multi-disciplinary artist, technician, photographer, designer, and video artist Arik Levy was born in Israel in 1963 and moved to Europe after participating in his first group exhibition in Tel Aviv in 1986. He graduated from the Art Center Europe in Switzerland and, after a producing products and pieces for exhibitions in Japan, return to work in stage installations in Europe.

The creation of his current studio in Paris led him back to art and industrial design, and his work can be seen in galleries and museums worldwide. Best known for his sculptures – such as his signature Rock pieces, his installations, artworks, editions, and design works – Levy nevertheless feels that “the world is about people, not objects.” His work includes public sculpture, as well as complete environments that can be adapted for multi use. “Life is a system of signs and symbols,” he says, “where nothing is quite as it seems.”

Levy’s work is in the collections of museums worldwide, including the Art Institute of Chicago; the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; and the Israel Museum.




Gather Forty, ​2010, Liza Lou 


Series comprised of 40 individual sculptures featuring gold-plated beads threaded onto 400 individual strands of stainless steel wire and bound into a single sheaf (25 x 12 cm) to create a circular field.
The sculpture is available for $22,500 (excluding VAT and shipping) and is accompanied by a signed certificate of authenticity from the artist.

Gather Forty, 2010, is the fourth in the Israel Museum’s exclusive commissions of limited editions by leading contemporary artists to benefit the Museum.

Born in New York City, Liza Lou emerged in 1996 when her room-size sculpture Kitchen was shown at the New Museum in New York. Representing five years of solo labor, this groundbreaking work, now in the Whitney Museum’s permanent collection, utilized glass beads as an index of intensive labor and it engaged the materiality and social consciousness that continues to underscore her practice today.

Lou has exhibited at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; V&A, London; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo; Fondation Cartier, France, Contemporary Art Museum, Houston, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In addition, her work has been featured in solo exhibitions at Museum Kunst Palast, Düsseldorf; Henie Onstad Kunstsenter, Norway; Fundacio Joan Miró, Barcelona; SCAD Museum of Art, Georgia; Aspen Art Museum, Colorado; the Bass Museum of Art, Miami and the Neuberger Museum of Art, New York, and she has participated in the 5th Biennale de Lyon d’art Contemporain, France; Taipei Biennial, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taiwan and ARS 01, KIASMA Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki.

In 2005, Lou moved to South Africa, where she established a studio with Zulu beadworkers. Lou currently lives and works in Los Angeles. She is a 2002 MacArthur Fellow and the recipient of a 2013 Anonymous was a Woman Award.



Culture Flower, ​2007, Yinka Shonibare, MBE

Image  courtesy the artist and Stephen Friedman Gallery

A delicate bouquet of hand-made fabric flowers arranged in a hand-blown opaque black glass vase. (30 x 27 cm). The exuberant bouquet of gardenias, camellias, peonies and roses is made from the artist's signature African fabric. Each flower has been hand selected by the artist from a different batik cloth, and in each arrangement in this edition of 40, the choice of fabric flowers is varied, making each piece unique.

The work is priced at $30,000 (excluding shipping and VAT) and includes a signed certificate of authenticity by the artist. 

Questions of identity and the concept of cultural hybridity play a key role in Yinka Shonibare’s sculptures, paintings, installations, photographs, and videos. His art deals with race, class, colonialism, exploitation, and the complex relationship between “First” and “Third” Worlds. In spite of this serious subject matter, Shonibare’s works – often featuring his trademark “African” batik fabric – appeal to the viewer’s sense of humor and of beauty.

Yinka Shonibare was born in London in 1962, spent his youth in Nigeria, and returned to the UK to study art, receiving his MFA from Goldsmiths College. He continues to live and work in London. Shonibare has participated in seminal group exhibitions worldwide, and his many solo shows include Double Dress at the Israel Museum in 2002 and a 2008 retrospective that traveled from Sydney, Australia, to New York and Washington, DC. His Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle was mounted on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square in 2010 and is now installed at the entrance to the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. A recent commissioned outdoor work, Wind Sculpture (SG) I, was on display in Central Park in 2018.

Shonibare was awarded the decorations MBE in 2005 and CBE in 2019; in 2013 he was elected to the Royal Academy. His works are included in prominent collections internationally, among them Tate, London; V&A, London; National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; and The Museum of Modern Art, New York.


PizzaKobra Light, 2014, designer and architect Ron Arad


Small masterpiece of art technology that can be transformed from a flat coil into a unique object of fluid design and can be positioned into a variety of configurations. 
PizzaKobra is part of an edition of 40, available at $15,000 (excluding VAT and shipping). Each piece is signed by the artist and numbered.

Ron Arad’s constant experimentation with the possibilities of materials and his radical re-conception of the form and structure of objects and buildings has put him at the forefront of contemporary design and architecture. PizzaKobra Light, a small masterpiece of art and technology, is a flat coil when at rest. In action, it becomes a unique object of fluid design, the hi-tech soft articulations that connect the circular sectors of the spiral creating any number of dynamic configurations over the same simple line.

Born in Tel Aviv in 1951 and educated at the Bezalel Academy, Jerusalem, and the Architectural Association in London, Ron Arad co-founded the London design and production studio One Off in 1981. In 1989, Ron Arad Associates was established, with Ron Arad Architects formed alongside in 2008 to concentrate on larger architectural commissions. Arad was awarded the Royal Designer for Industry (RDI) in 2002 and in 2011 was awarded the London Design Week Medal for design excellence. A Professor at the Royal College of Art in London from 1997 until 2009, he was elected to the Royal Academy in 2013.

Notable among Ron Arad’s installations and exhibitions is Curtain Call, which opened at the Roundhouse London in 2011 and traveled in 720° form to The Israel Museum, Jerusalem in 2012. His public sculptures include Big Blue in Canary Wharf (2000), Evergreen! in Roppongi Hills, Tokyo (2003), and Vortext in Seoul, South Korea (2011). Architectural projects include the foyer at the Tel Aviv Opera House (1994), Hotel Duomo, Rimini (2006), and the Design Museum Holon, Israel (2010). His works are found in museum collections worldwide, among them the Centre Pompidou, Paris, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, and the V&A, London.




Traveling Loans and Exhibitions

Traveling Exhibitions

Bologna, Italy: October 15, 2017-February 11, 2018 and Madrid, Spain: March 22-July 15, 2018
Duchamp, Magritte, Dalí: The Revolutionaries of the XX Century: Masterpieces from The Israel Museum, Jerusalem is on display at the Palazzo Albergati in Bologna, Italy until February 11, 2018The exhibition will then travel to Palacio Gaviria in Madrid.

NYC, USA:  November 3-March 18, 2018 and San Francisco, USA:  August 30, 2018-January 6, 2019 – Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dresscurrently on display at the Jewish Museum, New York, will travel to the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco. In the Press>>

Lisbon, Portugal: February 28-May 27, 2018 – No Place Like Home will be on display at Museu Colecção Berardo.

Tokyo, Japan: June 6-July 29, 2018 – The Miracle of M.C Escher: Prints from The Israel Museum, Jerusalem will be on display at the Ueno Royal Museum. 

Paris, France: September 15-December 20, 2018 – Doing Time in Holot will be on display at the Musée d'Art Moderne, accompanied by a special French/English edition of the exhibition catalogue.



Munich, Germany: October 30, 2017-April 4, 2018; Humlebæk, Denmark: May-August 2018; Cologne, Germany October 2018-January 2019 – Kandinsky at Tea is on loan as part of the Gabriele Münter  Creative Vision exhibition at Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus und Kunstbau München in Munich, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebæk, and Museum Ludwig Köln in Cologne.

Berlin, Germany: December 10, 2017-April 30, 2019 – Rosh Hashanah Greeting Cards and replicas from the Archaeology Wing are on display in Welcome to Jerusalem, an exhibition at the Jewish Museum Berlin.

Augsburg, Germany: January 29-June 30, 2018 – A Torah ark curtain from Kriegshaber, Germany circa 1724 will be part of an exhibition on the Kriegshaber Jewish Community at the Jewish Culture Museum.

Frankfurt, Germany: February 8-May 21, 2018 Peter Paul Rubens' The Death of Adonis is on loan as part of the Rubens: The Power of Transformation exhibition at the Stadel Museum.