Raise the Roof

Raise the Roof

Sunday, November 8th, 2015 at 3:30 PM
West Coast Premiere

The Peter Oberlander Memorial Film

Sponsored by:
the Oberlander Family

Rivalling the greatest wooden architecture in history, the synagogues of 18th-century Poland inspired artists Rick and Laura Brown of Handshouse Studio to embark on a 10-year pursuit—to reconstruct the elaborate roof and painted ceiling of the Gwozdziec synagogue. Leading over 300 students and professionals from 16 countries, the Browns grapple not just with the echoes of World War II when these buildings were destroyed by the Nazis, but also with warped timbers, tricky paints, and period hand tools. By the end of the project, they have done more than reconstruct a lost synagogue: they have recovered a lost world. In 2014, the Gwozdziec roof was unveiled as the centerpiece of the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw.

Follows Torah Treasures & Curious Trash.

Film provided by The National Center for Jewish Film


  • Please note that as a registered non-profit society, anyone over 18 attending one of our screenings is required to be a member of our society for us to retain our non-profit status.
  • Please present your VJFC membership at every screening.

Festivals and Awards

  • Best Film - Audience Award Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival, 2015
  • Atlanta Jewish Film Festival
  • Toronto Jewish Film Festival
  • Berlin Jewish Film Festival
  • Barcelona Jewish Film Festival
  • San Francisco Jewish Film Festival
  • Haifa International Film Festival

Event Details

Film Info

Year 2015
Country USA
Director Yari & Cary Wolinsky
Runtime 85 min
Language English & Polish with English subtitles