Release Date: December 15, 2015

The JM26 - Events, People, & Ideas That Made a Mark in 2015

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Third Annual End-of-Year List Created by the Jewish Museum

New York, NY - The Jewish Museum in New York City presents the third annual JM26, a thought-provoking and entertaining list of 26 events, people, and ideas that made a mark in 2015. From Jon Stewart’s farewell to late night and James Franco’s epic bar mitzvah celebration to trends in food, fashion, and art, JM26 items range from pop culture trends to geopolitical events and from whimsical to provocative – providing a diverse look at 21st century global Jewish experience.

The full JM26 is available online in a dynamic and easy-to-share format at Follow the conversation on social media with #JM26. The 2015 JM26 includes:

  • Schumer Power – This year, we learned that Amy Schumer is in fact cousins with Senator Chuck Schumer when the two teamed up to campaign against gun violence. On a (much) lighter note, Amy Schumer had quite a year, winning her first Emmy, writing and starring in a hit feature film, releasing a new comedy special on HBO, and being named one of TIME’s 100 most influential people.
  • Jon Stewart Says Goodbye – Late night TV will never be the same. After 16 years of hosting The Daily Show, Jon Stewart has said goodbye, leaving the rest of us to navigate another election year without his humor to get us through.
  • Mazel Tov, James Franco! – Actor James Franco had an epic bar mitzvah celebration hosted by Seth Rogen with special guests Miley Cyrus (decked out in a bright blue leotard and Stars of David), the Israeli band Haim, and Bill Hader.
  • Larry David Feels the Bern – Larry David appeared on Saturday Night Live, giving a spot-on impersonation of Vermont senator Bernie Sanders. Then our favorite Jewish presidential candidate took it a step further and returned the favor, channeling his inner Larry David on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
  • Notorious RBG Goes to Hollywood – Feminists rejoice! Natalie Portman will play Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in a biopic. In case that’s not enough lady power goodness, filming was delayed because Portman insisted on finding a female director.
  • Live Long and Prosper, Leonard Nimoy – This year, Trekkies gave their final Vulcan salute to actor, artist, collector, and philanthropist Leonard Nimoy, who passed away at the age of 83.
  • The Grindr Rabbi – Yente the matchmaker would kvell. A rabbinical student at Hebrew Union College in New York has devised a way to use the hook-up app Grindr to orchestrate Shabbat dinners for the gay community.
  • Schmear Tactics – Carb lovers beware: 2015 is the “Year of the Bagel” with a slew of bagel shops and micro-factories opening up throughout New York City.
  • Yo, New York, Oy! – Visitors to Brooklyn are getting a shout out from artist Deborah Kass, who has installed her first public sculpture in Brooklyn Bridge Park, comprised of giant painted aluminum letters that read “YO” or “OY.”
  • Fashion-Forward Modesty VOGUE deemed Orthodox Jewish Style “Fall 2015’s Sexiest Trend,” and stores like Rag & Bone have begun highlighting Orthodox Jewish women’s use of the slip dress as a great piece for layering — taking a cue from designers like Simi Polonsky and Chaya Chanin.
  • Mission Gefilte Fish – The Hillary Clinton email scandal raised a lot of questions, though none more cryptic — or more Jewish — than one 2010 email whose subject line read simply, “Gefilte fish.” Find out the true story behind Gefilte-gate.

Released each December, the JM26 references 26 ceremonial objects with which the Jewish Museum was founded in 1904. The number 26 also has significance in Kabbalah, a form of Jewish mysticism.

About the Jewish Museum

Located on Museum Mile at Fifth Avenue and 92nd Street, the Jewish Museum is one of the world's preeminent institutions devoted to exploring art and Jewish culture from ancient to contemporary, offering intellectually engaging and educational exhibitions and programs for people of all ages and backgrounds. The Museum was established in 1904, when Judge Mayer Sulzberger donated 26 ceremonial objects to The Jewish Theological Seminary as the core of a museum collection. Today, the Museum maintains a collection of over 30,000 works of art, artifacts, and broadcast media reflecting global Jewish identity, and presents a diverse schedule of internationally acclaimed temporary exhibitions.  


The Jewish Museum is located at 1109 Fifth Avenue at 92nd Street, New York City. Museum hours are Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, 11am to 5:45pm; Thursday, 11am to 8pm; and Friday, 11am to 4pm.  Museum admission is $15.00 for adults, $12.00 for senior citizens, $7.50 for students, free for visitors 18 and under and Jewish Museum members.  Admission is Pay What You Wish on Thursdays from 5pm to 8pm and free on Saturdays.  For information on the Jewish Museum, the public may call 212.423.3200 or visit the website at

Press contacts

Anne Scher, Molly Kurzius, or Alex Wittenberg

The Jewish Museum

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