Barbara Cuglietta is the new director of the Jewish Museum of Belgium in Brussels. The announcement was made by the Museum’s board on June 15th, the day she officially took office.
Cuglietta, who succeeded the former director Pascale Falek Alhadeff, won a public call for applications published by the board of the Museum in March. Graduated in civil engineering in 1998, Barbara Cuglietta worked in the International Finance field for more than 10 years and later specialized in the arts. She graduated in Modern Art History at the Central Saint Martins, part of the University of the Arts London.
From 2010 to 2014, she was founder, owner and director of the Brussels-based VidalCuglietta art gallery. From 2014 to 2017 she worked as Deputy director of the École Nationale Supérieure des arts visuels of La Cambre (ENSAV). Ahead of her appointment as director of the Jewish Museum of Belgium, she worked as director of the Barbara Gladstone Gallery in Brussels.
Inaugurated in 1990, the Jewish Museum of Belgium has been hosted in a fin-de-siècle building on Rue de Mimes since 2002, where it displays its exhibition one five floors. The Museum hosts a large variety of Judaica objects, synagogue furnishings, and photographs, and it has a library containing about 25,000 works. Major renovation works on the museum are expected to take begin in February 2021 in the context of the “New Museum” project.
On May 24, 2014, four people – two tourists and two members of the Museum staff – were killed in a terrorist attack at the Museum. At the entrance, there is a plaque remembering the attack and the victims’ names.
Earlier this year, the Museum won the Democracy and Human Rights Prize granted by the Parliament of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation since 2015. The Museum won the prize thanks to its work in the field of Holocaust memory and its promotion of values of openness and intercultural dialogue.
The Museum officially reopened its doors on May 19th, after two months of closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic.