of Jewish Studies is one of the leading Jewish organizations in Chicago
, Illinois. Not affiliated with any single branch of Judaism
, Spertus includes the Spertus Museum, a sizeable library (Asher Library), and the degree-granting Spertus College (North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
). Originally founded in 1924 as The College of Jewish Studies, Spertus has long focused on training Jewish educators. The Spertus Museum was founded in 1968. The Targ Center for Jewish Music and the Chicago Jewish Archives is another part of the campus. Together with the Catholic diocese of Chicago, since 1987 Spertus sponsors The Joseph Cardinal Bernardin
Center for the Study of Eastern European Jewry.
Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies reopened on November 30, 2007, on South Michigan Avenue
along the Historic Michigan Boulevard District
across from Grant Park
in a new building designed by Chicago-based architects Krueck & Sexton. The environmentally sustainable facility features interlocking interior spaces and a ten-story faceted window wall. The cost was more than $50 million.
The building's two top floors house Spertus Museum's core-collection display, while the galleries present site-specific installations of work by international artists and a series of changing exhibitions. A 400-person theater and an interactive Children’s Center, designed by Jim Lasko from Redmoon Theater and Odile Compagnon, are also part of the new building.
Spertus partnered with Wolfgang Puck to provide the only kosher café in the downtown Chicago area.