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Restoration of the interior and mobiliary of the functionalistic synagogue in Brno and its opening to public

Department 58 – International Relations
Department 58 – International Relations


RegionSouth Moravian Region
Title of the ProgrammeCultural Heritage and Contemporary Art - programme area no. 16
Title of the ProjectRestoration of the interior and mobiliary of the functionalistic synagogue in Brno and its opening to public
Number of the Project---
Project Promoter

Jewish Community of Brno

Name of Norwegian Partner(s)

Jodisk Museum i Oslo (Jewish Museum Oslo)

Objective of the Project

The synagogue in Skořepka street is currently the only operating synagogue in the territory of Moravia and |Silesia, with its own rabbi. It is also the last remaining synagogue in Brno City, where about 10,000 Jews used to live before WWII. The synagogue was built by Agudas Achim Community from donations of Galician Jews who had found refuge in Brno after WWI, and open in 1936. It is a unique building designed in functionalist style, for which Brno became a real hub in between the world wars, while more often than not the investors of functionalist projects (incl. villa Tugendhat) were members of the Jewish community. In WWII the synagogue was used as a warehouse, which resulted in considerable damage. After the war it was re-consecrated, and has been used for its original purpose ever since. But the property has not gone through any major structural modifications, and has fallen into disrepair. The presented project is a follow-up, its objective being to return the interior into its original condition. The key activity will be making of replicas of the mobiliary (especially the pews) according to the archived pictures. As regards the preserved objects (lecterns and tables) these will be restored, as well as the floor. Another key component of the project is equipment of the synagogue with objects of worship and other mobiliary now missing (esp. Torah and sacral textiles). These objects will be made according to the standard necessary for worshipping. The objective is not just renovation of the synagogue itself as a cultural heritage of major importance. The project also aims at opening the synagogue for general public. The Jewish imprint on the local history that can be counted in centuries was violently interrupted by WWII and holocaust, and also by the subsequent 40 years of oppression. This resulted in the fact that the Jewish culture, spiritual traditions and very presence and impact on the history of Moravia and Silesia are de facto erased from public image. The renewed synagogue will therefore serve not only its religious purposes - it will be open for general public as well. Cultural events, concerts, exhibitions, educational workshops etc. will take place here, focusing on the regional Jewish legacy. The synagogue will also provide a base for research in this sense. The goal of these activities is to renew the awareness and knowledge of the presence of Jewish tradition and culture in the historical development of the region, and of the influences on the identity of local population.

Approved grant

approximately 204 409 EUR

Project DurationStart date: 1st January 2015, End date: 30th April 2016