De lens van Spinoza (Spinoza’s Lens)  17 October until 27 November 2011

Drawings from a graphic novel by Jaron Beekes

The graphic novel De lens van Spinoza (Spinoza's Lens) tells the turbulent life story of the Netherlands'greatest philosopher Baruch Spinoza (1632-1677), providing an imaginative and accessible introduction to his work. From 17 October to 27 November 2011 the JHM is presenting original drawings from the graphic novel by Jaron Beekes in the changing display case.

In the prologue, Spinoza is excommunicated from Amsterdams's Portuguese Jewish community. Yet, this doesn't deter the promising young merchant who prefers doing things his own way. Spinoza leaves Amsterdam to develop his philosophical system: a radical and secular answer to religion. His argument for political and religious tolerance makes him, for the most part, enemies. Despised and disputed until his death, he continues to fight for what we now take for granted: freedom of speech and religion.

De lens van Spinoza is Jaron Beekes' (1982) debut graphic novel. He studied Arts and Culture (VU University Amsterdam), Illustration Design (Utrecht School of the Arts), Image & Language (Gerrit Rietveld Academy) and contributed a weekly cartoon to Amsterdam's student magazine Folia. Presently he is a magazine illustratror, designs posters, flyers, etcetera and works as a reviewer for publications including the Nieuw Israëlietisch Weekblad and Metropolis M. In the summer of 2011 he appeared in the Jewish Broadcasting's Company's TV travel series Dwars door de Diaspora, in which six Jewish youngsters go in search of their roots and identity.

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