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Showing posts from July, 2013

Wise Sons Brings Contemporary Jewish Food to the CJM

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It all began with a nonexistent sandwich. Leo Beckerman and Evan Bloom wanted a quality pastrami sandwich but could not find it in San Francisco. 



The two southern California men met in Hillel’s kitchen while attending UC Berkeley, where they started a weekly kosher barbeque. They used a camp stove that served the 200-250 attendants; it became so successful that they had ten people helping in the kitchen. Their theme was not always Jewish: they made jambalaya, Mexican food, and Chinese food. But the recurring motif was creating community over food.



Cats: The Beat Generation’s Secret Love Affair

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Created in conjunction with the San Francisco SPCA  All photography by Rod Kilpatrick
A lot of the cats at the San Francisco SPCA have had beat lives. Living in backyards, alleys, and abandoned buildings, they have been deserted by their families. Some of the female felines are impregnated and left to care for their litter. And yet these creatures still persevere. They lead dignified lives full of spirit and love. They are open and ready for new relationships at a moment’s notice, much like the Beats. For example, Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, and Allen Ginsberg all fall in love with multiple people in the beloved Beat bible, On the Road. These cats, more importantly, are survivors. They have lived outside of society, looking in, observing, and wanting to be part of it.

Moving Huge Sculpture and Latte Memories

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A "before" image from SFMOMA's Instagram of their rooftop sculpture garden and cafe, and below a video documenting how the sculpture Zim Zum I was moved from this location to the CJM.
The worst kept secret here at the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM) is that before they closed for renovation, a lot of us loved to have coffee and meetings in the rooftop sculpture garden of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA).

A Tour of Allen Ginsberg's North Beach

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by Melanie Samay, Contemporary Jewish Museum

"once again I wanted to get to San Francisco, everybody wants to get to San Francisco and what for? In God's name and under the stars what for? For joy, for kicks, for something burning in the night."
–Jack Kerouac, On The Road: The Original Scroll

Recently, I went on a walking tour of San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood with some Museum colleagues to visit historical sites related to the Beat Generation. It was a fun way to prepare for the Museum’s exhibition Beat Memories: The Photographs of Allen Ginsberg is currently on view at the Contemporary Jewish Museum (CJM) through September 8.