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 Before the Flame Goes Out

Before the Flame Goes Out is a project to document the material, cultural and historical essence of the Romaniote (Greek) Jewish communiites in Ioannina, Greece and New York, USA. The ongoing project, created and directed by New York-based photographer Vincent Giordano, consists of high-quality still photography, motion picture film, and audio, documenting the synagogues and their art, the congregations, and the life stories of the congregants who have managed to maintain their traditions for millenia.

ISJM has been the primary sponsor of this project since 2002.

Before the Flame Goes Out Exhibition on View at Museum of Biblical Art in New York City from March to July 2008

ISJM is co-sponsor of an exhibition at the Museum of Biblical Art in New York City based on the ongoing ISJM documentation project Before the Flame Goes Out (BFGO), a multi-disciplinary work by Vincent Giordano and an ISJM advisory team.  BFGO documents the history, art, architecture and community of Romaniote (Greek) Jews from Ioannina, Greece in Ioannina and New York City.  The Museum of Biblical Art exhibition includes photographs by Vincent Giordano of the synagogues, ritual art and prayer and life cycle services from Ioannina and New York. The exhibition is on view in conjunction with the larger "Treasures from the Walters Art Gallery (Baltimore)." 

The exhibition Before the Flame Goes Out will run from March 5 - July 2, 2008.

On May 22, Steven Bowman, Professor of Judaic Studies at the University of Cincinnati, will look at the history of Jews in Greece - their ancient origins, their contribution to Jewish culture, and fate within the larger Christian community. This lecture will relate both to MOBIA's main exhibition in its discussion of the Byzantine Empire, and to Before the Flame Goes Out. Co-sponsored by the JCC Manhattan.

Steven Bowman's lecture: The History and Legacy of Greek Jews will be held on May 22, 2008 6:30pm - 7:30pm

On June 19, Vincent Giordano will screen a rough cut of his film documenting the Romaniote communities in Ioannina, Greece, and in New York City. The screening will be accompanied by a discussion with the artist.

Vincent Giordano's film screening: Before the Flame Goes Out will be held on June 19, 2008 6:30pm - 7:30pm

"Before the Flame Goes Out: The Romaniote Jews in Ioannina and New York" has been selected to be a part of New York City's Immigrant Heritage week, (April 14 - April 20, 2008) a city-wide celebration that honors the experiences and contributions of immigrants to New York City. 

For more on the exhibition, visit the MOBIA website at:

For more on Vincent Giordano's project, visit his website at:

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