The Philadelphia Museum of Jewish Art Exhibit
Mis/Constru(ct)ed Identities: Exploring Jewish Stereotypes
An Installation by Leslie Friedman
May 1—August 1, 2013
Mis/Constru(ct)ed Identities is a site-specific exhibition composed of modular, stackable, sculptural forms sheathed in screen-printed linoleum tiles. Though geometric, graphic, and colorful, Friedman’s undulating wall sculptures explore a serious, typically troubling, subject: stereotypes about the Jewish people. Some of these stereotypes—such as associations with intelligence and humor— could be considered flattering. Others—such as the canard of deicide and the “blood libel”—have been the source of centuries of persecution and suffering. Still more—the perception of disproportionate Jewish involvement, and success, in entertainment and finance—may inspire pride, suspicion, or are simply dismissed, with these varied responses depending upon each individual’s perspectives and mindset. Friedman confronts these stereotypes creatively and without fear, thereby challenging the viewer to do the same.