MultiMemo: Multidirectional Memory

The MultiMemo project (2023-2024) proposes an intersectional approach to remembrance – one that underscores  the relevance of remembering for social justice and facing contemporary challenges related to human rights violations, military conflicts and violence, social exclusion, and the migration crisis. Drawing from the concept of ‘multidirectional memory’, the project discusses and initiates a variety of forms of active remembrance in the public spheres across several European countries – a remembrance that does not exist in a social vacuum, and instead underscores the urgent need to stand up to contemporary practices of violence and exclusion.

MultiMemo’s point of departure is the troubling legacy of WWII in East Central Europe (ECE). The project focuses on sites and practices of ‘mutliple exclusion’ with respect to remembrance that are problematic or/and overlooked because the trauma of the Holocaust overlaps with other intricate social, historical or contemporary issues. Such sites in ECE also represent a form of legacy of both totalitarian regimes in modern history – National Socialism and Communism. The intersectional approach proposed by the project is relevant now more than ever, when we are experiencing – again, after almost eight decades of peace – a war in East Central Europe, in Ukraine, resulting in massive refugee and humanitarian crises.


The project is funded by the European Union (CERV-2022-REM) and involves nine European partners: FestivALT, UMF, Zapomniane Foundation, JCC Warsaw, the Formy Common Foundation, the Foundation for the Documentation of Jewish Cemeteries, CEJI – A Jewish Contribution to an Inclusive Europe, the Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg  and the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien Heidelberg.



The first meeting of the MultiMemo project took place on February 19-20, 2023 in Warsaw. Together with the partners of the consortium we discussed the project goals and approach and presented them to a larger audience.


We started the event with walks around two Jewish cemeteries of Warsaw, Okopowa and Bródno, focused on the topic of approach to remembrance, the concept of green commemorations and various types of commemoration. Then, the event was focused on project planning, communication and coordination of work for the upcoming months between the partners. The purpose of this meeting was also to integrate project partners and set an efficient and clear cooperation model.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 1)


In March, a ceremony was held in Tomaszów Lubelski and Pawłówka to commemorate the burial place of three Jewish children: Rywka, Balka and Jankiel, murdered during the Holocaust and buried near their home in Pawłówka. The highlight of the educational workshops was the ceremony of marking this place with a wooden matzeva. The workshops and the ceremony were attended by students of the 1st High School in Tomaszów Lubelski and students of the Primary School in Michalów, school directors, representatives of local authorities, museum employees, several residents, teachers and a local choir. A prayer for the dead was sung in Hebrew and Psalm 23 was read by a student.


These were the first series of workshops carried out by the Zapomniane Foundation as part of the MultiMemo project. We would like to thank the Association of the Jewish Historical Institute and the donor Szlomo-Albam-Stiftung for co-financing the workshops in Pawłówka “Reference Points” – creating a wooden matzevot.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 28)


On April 23, 2023, another event was held as part of the MultiMemo project, organized by the partner organization Formy Wspólne. The meeting concerned the cemetery in Bródno – the oldest Jewish necropolis in Warsaw, and the conceptual project of its renovation, namely the exhibition of about 40,000 matzevot, which are currently decaying in the heaps in the central part of the cemetery. The first part of the meeting was a walk around the cemetery and getting acquainted with the extraordinary and tragic history of this place, as well as with its actual state. Thanks to this, the participants could better understand the assumptions of the project presented by the architects of the Common Forms Foundation in the second part of the event at the Museum of Warsaw’s Praga.

In addition to the residents, the event was attended by activists from the Forum for Dialogue foundation, researchers from the department of anthropology and cultural studies, engineers, architects, and representatives of the Jewish Community from Warsaw and Sweden.

It was the first event organized by the Formy Wspólne foundations as part of the MultiMemo: Multidirectional Memory: Remembering for Social Justice project, in which we had the honor to participate as partners.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 27)


In May, a ceremony was held in Zamość to commemorate the burial place of the Jewish family of Mendel, Chajka and Niura in Zrąb, murdered by a German gendarme in their home.

The event was preceded by educational workshops and workshops with students of the 2nd Secondary School in Zamość, during which we prepared a wooden marker in the shape of a matzeva with an inscription along with the names of the victims written by the workshop participants.
After the workshops, we went with the youth to the burial place of a Jewish family in Zrąb, where the ceremony of marking this place with a wooden matzeva took place.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 32)



On June 18, 2023, another event was held as part of the MultiMemo project, organized by the partner organization Formy Wspólne, as part of the MultiMemo project: Multidirectional Memory: Remembering Social Justice, in which we had the honor to participate as partners.

The purpose of the event was to gather everyone – individuals, representatives of the administration and social organizations who contributed to the creation of the monument, as well as local residents – to start the next stage of cooperation and discussion on the future of the Memorial and plans for educational and cultural activities to maintain the memory of the archive and its creators – the Oneg Shabbat group.
The event began with joint work – tidying up the area around the monument, and then finishing the planting of the hedge – the last and so far unrealized element of commemoration, which recreated the basement where the archive was found. The second part of the event took place at the Muranów Station, where the creators of the project told about the history of its creation, followed by a discussion.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 29)



On June 18, 2023, another event was organized by the partner organization Fundacja Documentacji Cmentarzy Żydowskich, as part of the MultiMemo project, in which we had the honor to participate as partners. This is the first event  “Memory poles. Strategies of rebuilding the identity of the Bródno Jewish Cemetery” opened a series of workshops for the local community around the Jewish Cemetery in Bródno.

The aim of the workshop is to restore the memory of the Bródno cemetery and to involve residents, activists, social organizations and local authorities in this process.

During the event, there was a walk of two large cemeteries on opposite banks of the Vistula River, whose stories are diametrically opposed. The cemetery in Bródno, almost completely destroyed by the post-war regime, was forgotten and deprived of any signs of a cemetery. Today, pioneering research and commemorative activities are carried out there. The second cemetery at Okopowa Street is constantly used by the local Jewish community, and at the same time it is visited by crowds of tourists and pilgrims.

During the tour, the directors of both cemeteries familiarized us with the history of these places. Comparing both cemeteries, we talked about how to restore the cultural character of the necropolis in Bródno.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 31)

7. FestivALT – 23.06–2.07.2023

FestivALT – a 10-day festival of Jewish art, activism and education, is another event carried out as part of the MultiMemo project. The program included 24 events: performances, discussions, urban walks, workshops, exhibitions, created by authors and artists from Central and Eastern Europe, America and Canada.

The festival was themed around the notion of intersectional memory with a particular focus on “doykait” – a Yiddish word that can be understood as “Hereness” or the “here and now”. It was an idea popularized during the interwar periods by the Bund (Jewish Socialist Party) and it was most commonly connected to the struggle for Jewish rights and cultural autonomy wherever Jews were living. For the Bund, this meant advocating for the strengthening of Central and Eastern European Jewry and firmly claiming their homeland in the Diaspora, rather than being separated out and relegated to Israel. For FestivALT we used the notion of “Doykait” as advocative lens for the contemporary intersectional Polish Jewish Identity.

→ Read the Event Description (WP 15)


The MultiMemo project - Multidirectional Memory: Remembering for Social Justice, is realized in collaboration with CEJI - A Jewish Contribution to an Inclusive Europe, Foundation for Documentation of Jewish Cemeteries, Foundation Formy Wspólne, Urban Memory Foundation, Zapomniane Foundation, Hochschule fur Judische Studien, JCC Warszaw and Wurzburg University


The MultiMemo project - Multidirectional Memory: Remembering for Social Justice, is funded by the European Union as part of the Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values (CERV) program.