Institut de la Mémoire Audiovisuelle Juive
- Institute of the Jewish Audiovisual Memory
Bruxelles / Brussel
Bruxelles / Brussel
The Institute of Audiovisual Jewish Memory, was founded in Brussels in 1984, following the establishment of the same Institute in Paris, by Esther Hoffenberg, a year earlier.
After a stay in the United States, Esther Hoffenberg, co-realisator of the Belgian film Comme si c’était hier, noticed that there was a lack of central archives, dissemination, or simply of public information for films related to Judaism in Europe. Béatrice Godlewicz, a teacher who was completing an archivist degree at the time, also made the same observation. She set up a parallel association to that of Paris to provide for schools and teachers with films and information that dealt with Jewish themes that could combat stereotypes as well as Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism. From 1984 to 1988, Esther Hoffenberg, and later, Pauline Juste, allowed the Brussels association to develop compatible tools for recording data on the basis of cooperation and exchange of information. IMAJ – Paris was eventually integrated into Museum of Jewish Art and History, thereby losing its status as an independent association and the IMAJ name. IMAJ – Brussels, thanks to a grant from the Belgian French community remains an independent institution.
Thirty years on, IMAJ has achieved its goal: it has produce an ever-growing database of new films. More than 5,000 titles have already been identified and hundreds of tapes and DVDs can be consulted on the spot. The database is accessible to internet users. IMAJ organizes film events: previews, festivals, screenings with discussions and, more recently, supports the production of films. The IMAJ, with the support of the Cinémathèque of the Belgian French Community, has produced a DVD accompanied by a booklet, Le cinéma de Vouzôtres, which provides a showcase of films produced by Belgian filmmakers on Jewish life.
Archival and Other Holdings
Since 1988, IMAJ has identified films that deal with various aspects of Jewish life and history, as well as genocides and crimes against humanity. Currently, the IMAJ database is the most comprehensive database in French devoted to films with a Jewish theme. IMAJ has purchased Video Rights for a small portion of these films.
Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Conditions of Access
For any type of service, it is best to contact the Institute in advance by email or phone.
The Institute of Audiovisual Jewish Memory website consulted on 15/07/2019
Pierre-Alain Tallier (dir.), Gertjan Desmet & Pascale Falek-Alhadeff, Sources pour l'histoire des populations juives et du judaïsme en Belgique/Bronnen voor de geschiedenis van de Joden en het Jodendom in België, 19de-21ste eeuw, Brussel, ARA-AGR/Avant-Propos, 2016, 1,328 p.