About us


The Jewish Museum of Switzerland was opened in 1966 as the first Jewish Museum in the German-speaking world after the Second World War.

The initiative came from members of Espérance (a chevra kadisha; funeral society) who visited Cologne to see the exhibition «Monumenta Judaica» in 1963/64. They discovered that many of the ritual objects on display came from the Basel Judaica collection and decided to present these objects permanently in a Jewish museum in Basel.

When it first opened, the museum occupied two rooms at Kornhausgasse 8. The interior designer Christoph Bernoulli furnished the space.

The founding director, Dr. Katia Guth-Dreyfus, headed the museum for four decades. In 2010 she was succeeded by Dr. Gaby Knoch-Mund. In 2015, Dr. Naomi Lubrich took over as director of the Jewish Museum of Switzerland.


The Jewish Museum of Switzerland in 1966


The following notable figures are represented on the Patronage Committee and support the Jewish Museum's relocation plans:

Prof. Dr. René Bloch
Jewish Studies, University of Bern

Brigitte Bos-Portmann
Christian-Jewish Working Group in Switzerland, Laufen

Martine Brunschwig Graf
Ex National Councillor LDP, Geneva

Joël Dicker
Writer, Geneva

Prof. em. Roger Diener
Architect, Basel 

Dr. Christoph Eymann
National Councillor LDP, Basel

Dr. Ralph Friedländer
Vice President SIG and DFA, Bern

Prof. Dr. David Goldblum
CMO Pallas Kliniken, Bern

Dr. Josef Helfenstein
Director, Art Museum of Basel

Dr. Eva Herzog
Member of the Council of States SP, Basel

Jacob Keidar
Former Israeli Ambassador to Switzerland

Patricia Kopatchinskaja
Violinist and composer, Bern

Yves Kugelmann
Publicist, Basel

Prof. Dr. Lukas Kundert
Theologian, President of the Church Council of the Evangelical Reformed Church Basel-City

Renée Levi
Artist, Basel

Anne Lévy
Director General, Federal Office of Public Health, Bern

Max Moor
Writer and Journalist, Brandenburg

Dr. Thomas von Planta
Baloise, Zurich and Basel

Prof. Stephan Schmidt
Director, Music Academy Basel/Hochschule für Musik FHNW

Prof. Dr. Emile Schrijver
Director General, Joods Cultureel Kwartier, Amsterdam

Denise Tonella
Director, Swiss National Museum, Zurich

Petra B. Volpe
Screenwriter and director, Berlin and New York

Dr. Nina Zimmer
Director, Museum of Fine Arts Bern and Zentrum Paul Klee

Annual reports



Visitor Service

Artiom Istomin Mail


When you enter the museum, you’ll see me behind the counter. I am the newest member of the museum team, since 2023. My job is to welcome visitors and coordinate guided tours. I received my business administration degree in Kyiv, Ukraine. Throughout my professional life, I have been involved in services. When Russia attacked Ukraine, I ended up in the wonderful city of Basel.

Dinah Ehrenfreund



Dinah Ehrenfreund Mail


In my role as head of collections at the Jewish Museum of Switzerland, I preserve and research artifacts from different materials, eras, and regions of the world. As a historian, I am fascinated by objects that have multiple attributions, layers, and provenances.



Christina Meri Mail


...coming soon.


Graphicdesign & Communication

Elwira Spychalska Mail


I am responsible for communication and event-organization at the Jewish Museum of Switzerland. I study art history and English at the University of Basel.

Barbara Häne



Dr. des. Barbara Häne Mail


I was raised in Basel in the 1980s. After working in nursing for several years, I completed a degree in history and Jewish studies at the University of Basel. My research focused mainly on the history of Jews in Switzerland. My doctoral dissertation studied helpers and Jewish refugees in Switzerland between 1935 and 1955, based on the biography of Otto H. Heim. I have been working at the Jewish Museum of Switzerland since February 2021. An early bird, I am always the first in the office.

Naomi Lubrich



Dr. Naomi Lubrich Mail


I am the director of the Jewish Museum of Switzerland. Born in Toronto in 1976, I studied literature and art history in New York and Berlin, specializing in Jewish studies and costume history. I worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Jewish Museum Berlin. I love Basel’s museums and its location at the border of France and Germany – and the chocolate.



Louise Gillman Mail


As a freelance tour guide and artist, I support the museum with a variety of tasks, including guided tours, translations and making the museum's collection available on Wikipedia.
Born in the UK into a French-English family, I studied cultural anthropology at the University of Freiburg in Germany and have since been very active in the cultural sector of the border triangle.

© Marva Gradwohl, 2021