Current Special Exhibitions

Light & Noir:

Exiles and émigrés in Hollywood, 1933-1950

October 11, 2015-January 10, 2016

Main Special Exhibition Gallery


Light & Noir: Exiles and Émigrés in Hollywood, 1933–1950 tells the fascinating story of immigration, acculturation, and innovation that influenced Hollywood film as an American cultural phenomenon.

After coming to power in early 1933, Hitler took control of the German film industry and used cinema to fuel his propaganda. As a result, many German-speaking film icons fled to America and became the actors, directors, writers, and composers of Hollywood’s “Golden Age.”

Through costumes, props, film footage, and personal memorabilia, the exhibition explores how beloved films such as Casablanca and Double Indemnity were shaped by these pioneering film artists.

See full description and programming>






Abandoned at Srebrenica:

Photographs from the Aftermath

March 26, 2015 – January 3, 2016

Second Floor Hall of Reflection Gallery


Photograph courtesy of Tarik Samarah

Between July and December 2002, Bosnian photographer Tarik Samarah documented the lives of Srebrenica survivors and the work of identifying the dead from the mass graves. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum turned his collection into an exhibition that preserves the memory of those lost and gives insight into the aftermath of genocide. “After Auschwitz the world said never again,” Samarah states, explaining the project, “but Srebrenica happened. After Srebrenica, massacres and crimes continue…I would be ashamed to be quiet in this kind of world.”

This exhibition commemorates 20 years since the genocide and is presented in partnership with the Bosnian American Genocide Institute.

Abandoned at Srebrenica: Photographs from the Aftermath was produced by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.



Three Years, Eight Months, and Twenty Days:
The Cambodian Atrocities and the Search for Justice

May 5 – October 16, 2016

Goodman Balcony Gallery

Cambodia-homepage-434x293-040215For three years, eight months, and twenty days, the Khmer Rouge regime led by Pol Pot ruled Cambodia, enacting a program of harsh internment and torture and subjecting the Cambodian people to inhumane living conditions, starvation, forced labor, forced marriages, and execution. An estimated 1.7 million people perished under this regime. The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, created by the Royal Government of Cambodia and the United Nations, became fully operational in June 2007 to bring to justice senior leaders of the Khmer Rouge regime and those who were most responsible for international crimes and violations of Cambodian penal law from 17 April 1975 to 6 January 1979.This panel exhibition examines both the history of that period and the on-going trials.

This exhibition was produced by Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center in partnership with the Center for International Human Rights, Northwestern University School of Law, Chicago.
The Golder Family Foundation is the lead sponsor for all Illinois Holocaust Museum special exhibitions.
The organizers are grateful to their community partner, the Cambodian Association of Illinois.
2015 Genocide and Human Rights Commemorative Initiatives Sponsor: Oscar Isberian Rugs/Pedian Carpet.




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