Joseph Sassoon Semah
20 Oct - 22 Oct 2017

Gallery 1.30 (hallway of the historical, monumental staircase)
Museum entrance fee

Please find time schedule below.


Joseph Semah - MaKOM The doubling of the House 1979 - 2017 cellenbetonblokken 200 x 200 x 200 cm Photo: Ilya Rabinovich
Joseph Semah - MaKOM The doubling of the House 1979 - 2017 cellenbetonblokken 200 x 200 x 200 cm Photo: Ilya Rabinovich

Joseph Sassoon Semah spends three days in his house of concrete blocks reading from his thirty-year research on the "empty" pages in art history. In a performance program with five performances on October 20, 21 and 22 in the Stedelijk Museum, Joseph Sassoon Semah wants to demonstrate that the museum is also a place where various interpretations and visions on art are substantiated.

The performances coincide with the Friday night program Stedelijk Statements: Joseph Sassoon Semah. This program is the third edition of Stedelijk Statements, a program series in which a scholar, artist, critic, or cultural entrepreneur composes an evening at the museum. The organizer of the program is given the floor to share his or her views on visual art and design. New research and both artistic and academic projects will be presented during an evening program consisting of lectures, debates, performances, and film screenings. In this edition, artist Joseph Sassoon Semah discusses his statement on the lack of attention for Jewish narratives in contemporary art history.


MaKOM: The doubling of the House
October 20, 21, 22 2017, Sat-Sun 11am – 6pm Stedelijk Museum
With: Jom Semah – the cyclist / Peter Baren – the performer / Baruch Abraham – translator of Semah’s motherlanguage

Reflection on Joseph Beuys: How to explain hare hunting to a dead German artist, with Anastasia Kozlova (violist)
October 20 2017, Friday 9 pm, Stedelijk Museum

Reflection on Marcel Duchamp: OFaNIM and Bicycle Wheels are Reconciled
October 21, Friday  2 pm, Stedelijk Museum

Reflection on Barnett Newman: The Fragmented TaLIT
Read Full Text: Genesis 9 (1) ..."I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth"
October 21, Saturday 4 pm, Stedelijk Museum

Reflection on Kazimir Malevich: The naked square EIRUV ChaTzeROT (Amalgamation of Courts)
October 22, Sunday 2 pm, Stedelijk Museum

Reflection on Piet Mondrian: Piet Mondrian and the perfect typography of the Guest
October 22,  Sunday  4 pm, Stedelijk Museum

Several friends participate in the performances: Masja Austen, Emile Schrijver (October 20); Runa Thorkelsdottir, Yvonne Strang, Els Wijnen, Natalia Golofastova (October 21); Renne Hartog, Bulent Evren, Ferdinand van Dieten, Tom Bouws, Ton Nijhuis, Kaoru Yamamoto, Roshan Warjavand (October 22).


Artist Joseph Sassoon Semah (1948) was born in Baghdad, where his grandfather, Hacham Sassoon Kadoori (1885–1971) was the president of the Babylonian Jews. Together with his parents, he was “resettled” to the state of Israel in 1950. In the mid-seventies Semah decided to leave Israel. He speaks in this regard as an exile by choice. He has lived and worked in London, Berlin, and Paris, and since 1981 has been located in Amsterdam. He has positioned himself as the “Guest.” By reading in his native language, Hebrew, Semah signals a lack of Jewish knowledge in art history.


Metropool International Art Projects / Studio Meritis MaKOM

With thanks to the Nieuwe Kerk, the Jewish Historical Museum, the Stedelijk Museum, the Goethe Institute, Fonds Kerk en Wereld, Gravin van Bylandt Stichting, Haëlla Stichting, Kattendijke/Drucker Stichting, Mondriaan Stichting, De Vrijzinnige Fondsen, Rijwielhandel Oud-West, and all of the contributors to On Friendship / (Collateral Damage) II – The Guardians of the Door.