Everyone is welcome at the Hobart Synagogue for what promises to be a fascinating presentation by visiting researcher Jana Vytrhlik on the subject ‘The Egyptian revival style in early synagogue architecture in Australia’.
This illustrated talk will explore the mystery behind the question: Why did four Jewish communities (Sydney, Hobart, Launceston and Adelaide) construct their synagogues in an unprecedented Egyptian revival style between 1844 and 1850?
Separated by hundreds of miles from each other, and restricted by the unfamiliar continent, it is a wonder that all four synagogues shared the design of Ancient Egypt.
There are no known records, no architects’ plans and only two synagogues (Hobart and Launceston) are still standing today in their original form. This talk explores various theories, and suggests a new one to explain the style of these early synagogues.
Jana Vytrhlik is a Guest Curator at The Great Synagogue in Sydney; and a PhD candidate in the Art History and Jewish Studies departments, University of Sydney, working on the thesis The Great Synagogue in Sydney and its eighteenth-century rimmonim: An art history of Australian Judaica 1829 – 1887. In 2018, Jana curated the exhibition First 140 Years at the AM Rosenblum Jewish Museum, The Great Synagogue in Sydney, for the 140th anniversary of the consecration of the Synagogue (1878–2018).