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New Israel Museum website

by michael March 30 2008
Municipal news

The Israel Museum, Jerusalem's premier repository of old stuff, pretty stuff and weird stuff, has a brand new shiny website. They're pretty excited about it:

Inspired by the same white cube ideology emblematic of early Modernism that inspired the architecture of the Museum itself, the website's design is simple and geometric, and seems to expand organically during browsing. Clicking on the tabs surrounding the home page "cube" take the browser to the Museum's wings and collections, an event calendar, online information and research services, exhibition schedule, off-site venues, and Museum shop, to name some locations. Exciting new and updated features include virtual interactive tours of the Shrine of the Book and the Model of Second Temple Jerusalem, the complete digital Great Isaiah Scroll and Temple Scroll that can be rolled and unrolled, detailed information and images of a selection of 300 masterpieces of the Museum's collections, updates on the campus renewal project via photo and video coverage, exhibition information in Russian and French, and the World War II provenance search engine for researching the works of art and Judaica looted during the Holocaust currently under the custodianship of the Israel Museum.

There are some kinks to work out, but it's got potential, in that Modernist white cube sort of way. Jerusalemite thinks the site should be modeled instead on that goofy Shrine of the Book building/fountain, once memorably described as looking like "a Hershey's kiss taking a bath," but Jerusalemite was not consulted. 


The site also offers a look into the massive renovations going on all over the museum. Awash with big-ticket donations, the museum has apparently decided to redo just about everything. Photos of the construction in progress abound on the new site. 

And just remember, the archaeology section - also known as "by far the best reason to go the Israel Museum" - remains closed for renovations. It had better be so freaking awesome when they reopen it in...2010.

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