Looks like someone gave The Jewish Museum keys to a time machine. Come this winter, the museum’s public programs will include speakers such as the very dead Sigmund Freud, Franz Kafka, and Albert Einstein. All these illustrious figures will be beamed down to New York as part of “Wish You Were Here,” a two-year-long series of interviews between the museum’s deputy director Jens Hoffmann and famous dead people.
Other than being dead and famous, what do these speakers have in common? They’ve all been featured in Andy Warhol’s painting and print portfolio series “Ten Portraits of Jews of the Twentieth Century” (1980), which the museum has exhibited over the decades to mixed response from critics and the general public. The portfolio includes actress Sarah Bernhardt, artist and poet Gertrude Stein, and all three Marx Brothers.
Again, we’re not really sure if there’s going to be hologram versions of these speakers, or someone dressed up in mid-century garb. We’ve contacted the museum’s press department, but after two weeks of waiting, we’ve yet to hear a response. Without an explanation, we remain cautiously optimistic about the museum’s plans to excavate the corpses and summon the ghosts—or whatever they’re planning.
The first speaker will be Sigmund Freud, and tickets—they’re free—are now available.
[Update: The Jewish Museum has now released additional information regarding the December lecture. We’ve been told that Sigmund Freud will be played by Michael Roth, president of Wesleyan University and a prominent Freud scholar.]