Culture in Jerusalem during the British Mandate Period


expressionism in Germany , was a striking example , of her feeling of not belonging , of the sense of exile of her language and the rapid decline of German culture . But she was not the only one . The very few literary artists who found a creative home in Eretz Israel were those who settled in Tel Aviv , such as Max Brod and Sammy Gronemann . The immigrant artists fared better , and their artistic language was understandable to their new environment . However , they too experienced the trauma of being refugees and the crisis of adapting to a new , harsh land . Anna Ticho and Leopold Krakauer , both originally from Austria , who lived and painted in Jerusalem , were supportive of the immigrant artists . These artists , who congregated around Bezalel , were led by Joseph Budko and Mordecai Ardon , both of whom had been born in Poland , but had received their education in German schools of art . Tensions soon arose between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem : most of the Eretz Israel artists who were active in Tel Aviv , foremost among them Yosef Zaritsky , were followers of the French schools . They were not acquainted with the German expressionism that had flourished in the Weimar period , and they spurned any German influence . Consequently , many of the artists from Germany , including Miron Sima and Jakob Steinhardt , preferred Jerusalem . New galleries were opened in the city , and artistic activity flowered . Cafe Taamon in the Rehavia neighborhood was a meeting place for the “ Yekke ” intelligentsia , including the artists among them . Like Bezalel , the Palestine Music Conservatory in Jerusalem played an important role in the absorption of refugees from the Nazis . Upon its inception , the Conservatory , founded in 1933 by the noted violinist Emil Hauser , who had immigrated from Hungary the previous year , provided employment for 11 immigrant teachers ( out of a teaching staff of 33 ) . Kol Yerushalayim was established in 1936 , and included a music department , in which the musician Karel Solmon , who had emigrated from Germany in 1933 , soon gained prominence . The Kol Yerushalayim Orchestra ( the Palestine Broadcasting Service Orchestra ) was founded in 1938 , and it took in dozens of immigrant musicians . These institutions , notwithstanding their importance , could not compete with the attractive force of Tel Aviv , particularly following the establishment of the Philharmonic Orchestra in 1936 . The architect Eric Mendelsohn was one of the immigrants from Germany who arrived in Jerusalem in the second half of the 1930 s . Mendelsohn , known throughout the word for his brilliant expressionist architectural language , was not a Zionist . He was invited to Eretz Israel by the great Maecenas , patron of Agnon and other writers , Salman Schocken , to plan Schocken’s magnificent home on the border of the Rehavia and Talbieh neighborhoods . In Jerusalem Mendelsohn planned the Hadassah Hospital building on Mount Scopus and the Anglo-Palestine Bank on Jaffa Street . He carried out an amazing renovation of the windmill at the end of Ramban Street , which he transformed into his home ; this became the venue for parties and meetings of members of the Jewish and English cultural establishment in Jerusalem . His doubtful attitude regarding Zionism , and the criticism that was leveled against him due to his extravagant lifestyle , led him to move to the United States . The coffee houses that had been founded in the city by Central European refugees provided polite service , but quite a sparse menu . The main attraction in several was the chess boards , at which professors sat and played , kibitzers offered advice from the side , and the games were mixed with political and artistic arguments and philosophizing . The contribution of the German immigrants to the development of the Yishuvbefore the establishment of the State of Israel would be belatedly acknowledged , but this esteem did not register among the immigrants themselves at the most decisive moment , that of their absorption in a new land . What did get through to them was a sense of alienation , reinforced by derisive jokes at their expense .

Posen Foundation

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