The virtual exhibition on Google Arts & Culture (2020)

To mark Irena Sendler’s 110th birthday (1910–2008), POLIN Museum, together with Google Arts & Culture, recalled her extraordinary life. The virtual exhibition displays her numerous commemorations and decorations from the collection of POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. In addition, to mark the occasion, Google published a Doodle – a special graphic inspired by Sendler. This graphic temporarily replaced the local of the world’s most popular search engine.

The Irena Sendler Exhibition

Irena Sendler, a socially aware activist, is known mainly for her activities during the German occupation of Poland. At that time, together with a group of co-workers, she organised an operation to rescue Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto. The virtual exhibition, on Google Arts & Culture, shows how this was achieved, as well as the participants and the relevant places.

» View the virtual exhibition

The exhibition was created together with Google Arts & Culture

The exhibition also presents Sendler’s pre-War activities and her beliefs – working for the marginalised and against discrimination. “Every person is important”, she said. The virtual exhibition displays ner numerous commemorations and decorations from the collection of POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. Among them is the Righteous Among the Nations medal – donated, in 2013, by her daughter, Janina Zgrzembska, z 2013 roku – which is permanently on display in the Museum’s main hall.

POLIN Museum on Google Arts & Culture

POLIN Museum has had a presence on Google Arts & Culture since 2014. It was one of the first institutions in the world, and the first in Poland which,from the first day its Core Exhibition was opened to the public, made it available to the public both at the Museum itself, located at 6 Anielewicza Street in Warsaw, but also virtually on that platform.

As well as the virtual walks around the Core Exhibition “1,000 Years of History of Polish Jews” and the temporary exhibition “Warszawa, Warsze”, one can view other temporary exhibitions such as “How Do You Create a Museum?”, “Biographies of Things” oraz “Recover a Story – Items from POLIN Museum Collection” – the latter in as many as six languages – Polish, English, Spanish, Czech, French and Russian.

Currently, Google Arts & Culture supports more than 2,000 cultural instututions in 84 countries, presentings over 200,000 high-resolution digital images of original works of art, 7 million archival items, more than 2,000 Street View shots in museums and over 6,000 online exhibitions online, prepared by professional curators. All this is presented in a coherent manner on a single internet portal.

The Google Doodle of Irena Sendler

In addition, Google presented a temporary Doodle – a specially designed graphic inspired by the figure of Irena Sendler, which temporaily replaced the logo of the world’s most popular search engine. Doodles have been created by Google since 2007 to celebrate special holidays, events and anniversaries.

In 29 countries around the world, Irena Sendler’s Doodle welcomed Google users, marking her 110th birthday (15th February 2020). The graphic was designed by illustrator Lydia Nichols. About her project, she wrote, “While I wanted the Doodle to reflect the seriousness of the war, I also wanted it to echo the hope and perseverance Sendlerowa displayed in her actions”.

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