Art is an integral part of RiverSpring Health.
The Hudson River and Palisades provide a spectacular backdrop to Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection. A model of universal accessibility, our unique setting allows us to provide meaningful museum experiences to older adults and persons with special needs, while appealing to a diverse audience of visitors of all ages, backgrounds and abilities.
In the 1960s, Jacob Reingold (1915–1999), the visionary leader of the Home for more than 40 years, founded the art program, initially with a loan exhibition of 70 objects from New York’s Jewish Museum on Fifth Avenue. He went on to secure gifts and donations for a permanent collection of the Home’s own, beginning in the mid-1970s. He worked initially with Eric Estorick of the Grosvenor Gallery in London. Mr. Estorick’s father had been a resident of the Home from 1975 to 1978.
Grosvenor Gallery was a premier venue for Eastern European art during the 1960s when the Iron Curtain limited the opportunity for exhibitions of such work in the West. Mr. Estorick brought these artists to the attention of Mr. Reingold, resulting in Hebrew Home’s significant acquisitions of paintings and prints by important Russian and Eastern European artists. Mr. Reingold and Mr. Estorick also succeeded in bringing to the United States art by Jewish artists, who worked under severely restrictive conditions in the Soviet Union. Many of the Home’s substantial holdings of Eastern European art created during the height of the Cold War cannot be seen elsewhere in the United States and have been the focus of research and exhibitions during a period of “rediscovery” in the last decade. The holdings also include works by major artists well known in the modern and contemporary canons of art history, from Cubism to Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art to Minimalism, as well as more contemporary works by emerging artists.
Mr. Reingold told The New York Times in 1968, “what we wanted to do was to bring the beauty that is art into the lives of” the Home’s residents. ”At the same time, we’re trying to remove the invisible wall that very often separates an institution such as ours from the community.” That vision resonates in the mission of the Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection to this day.
As a proud member of the American Alliance of Museums and the Bronx Arts Alliance, RiverSpring Health is proud to possess a world-class collection of thousands of sculptures, drawings, photographs, and prints, as well as decorative arts and objects from world cultures.
Our permanent and rotating exhibits may be enjoyed in both the Derfner Judaica Museum and throughout the indoor and outdoor spaces of the Hebrew Home at Riverdale.
Our museum in the Jacob Reingold Pavilion maintains a collection of more than 1,400 Jewish ceremonial objects.
THE Art Collection
at the Hebrew Home
Over 5,000 works of art are installed throughout the residential neighborhoods and public spaces - both indoors and out.