Magnes set for open house at new location

The public can get a firsthand look at the new home of the Magnes museum at an open house from 12 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 22.

U.C. Berkeley’s Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life is housed in a completely remodeled 25,000-square-foot facility in downtown Berkeley. The building features a lecture room, seminar areas and a state-of-the art, central space to exhibit the Magnes’ treasured prints, paintings, photographs, costumes and Jewish ceremonial objects that tell the stories of Jews in the diaspora and the American West.

The Magnes collection, formerly located in a stately home in a Berkeley residential neighborhood, was gifted to U.C. Berkeley in 2010. The Russell Street site has since been sold.

The open house, which is free, will feature a ribbon cutting and remarks, along with four new exhibits:

• “The Magnes Effect: Five Decades of Collecting,” featuring a diverse sampling of objects from its archives

• “Dissolving Localities: Berkeley-Jerusalem,” a multimedia art project by Israeli composer and installation artist Emmanuel Witzthum

• “Gale Antokal: The Spill,” with drawings made of chalk, graphite, powder, ash and other materials, by Antokal, an arts professor at San Francisco State University

• “Case Study No. 1: Shaken, Not Stirred,” showing objects rediscovered during the Magnes’ move from its former home to its new quarters near the main gate of the U.C. Berkeley campus

The event also will include food and musical performances by Veretski Pass, the Mizrahi band Za’atar, campus a cappella ensemble Kol HaDov and the Cal Marching Band.

The collection is located at 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. For more information, visit