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HERITAGE
Newsletter of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation
   Volume 12,  No. 2                        September, 2006   
 

Craft and Folk Art Museum Hosting the Munayyer Collection

"Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery" opened to the public at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles on Saturday, July 15,Photo: Kirk McKoy 2006. Coming less than three months after the successful exhibition "Threads of Tradition: Palestinian Bridal Costumes", Sovereign Threads is the latest of PHF activities to show the American public and our own Arab-Americans the beauty of Palestinian embroidery, motifs and symbols stitched on these stunning garments representing now-vanished Palestinian villages, and the women that wrote Palestinian history with needle and thread.

The exhibit includes selections from the pristine collections of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation and that of Hanan and Farah Munayyer. This historic display is the first of its kind in a Los Angeles museum and comes almost twelve years after "Out of the East" exhibited for three months at the Mingei Museum of Folk Art at La Jola, San Diego.

Items on display include dresses representing Bethlehem, Jerusalem region, Hebron region, Ramallah region, Jaffa region, Gaza region, Galilee, and the Southern and Coastal regions. In addition to the dresses, there are veils, headpieces, jackets and jewelry. Complementing the antique garments on display are contemporary cross stitch embroidery in the form of pillows, wall hanging, runners, scarves and other items, made by young women of the Palestinian refugees of INAASH in Lebanon.

 

Hanan Lectures at the Craft and Folk Art Museum

On Saturday, July 16, 2006 Hanan Munayyer was a guest speaker at the Craft and Folk Art Museum as part of the museum activities to celebrate Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery. Using slides from her own collection of antique embroidered costumes, headdresses and jewelry, Hanan demonstrated how traditional textile arts of the Middle East have changed relatively little over the millennia. This lecture was attended by about fifty people.

 

Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery

DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT

Sovereign Threads is an exhibition about both art and cultural identity. Given the current displacement of Palestinians, at first glance, the title may seem a misnomer. The term "Sovereign" describes self-rule, autonomy, and independence - all still painfully absent for Palestinians in the political sphere. However, from a cultural perspective, the term takes on a more comprehensive meaning.

Anthropologically speaking, even the tiniest tribe in the most remote corner of the globe enjoys cultural sovereignty as demonstrated in shared language, faith and tradition. National identity manifests itself most sublimely in folk tradition. As these threads of tradition are passed through generations, they weave a fabric of cultural cohesiveness that testifies to the fact that neither war, conflict, nor displacement can erase national identity.



Janeh-wa-nar dress from Lifta , circa 1930s
.

The costumes and embroidery on display are living records of Palestinian "cultural sovereignty." The threads in these objects literally meld an idyllic past with a turbulent present and endeavor to create a brighter future.

The image of women sitting in circles chatting and creating beautiful bridal wear is a universal one. Whether Native American, Ukrainian, Vietnamese, Ethiopian or Palestinian, women have always been the preservers of ancestral rituals. As they revive a culture in peril, the Palestinian women who create contemporary embroidery in refugee camps are also preserving their own imperiled dignity. War afflicts the deepest scars upon women, so it is remarkable that it is women who seek to beautify their world even in the most dire conditions.

It is an honor to share these treasures with you. May this visit stir your minds and hearts.

Maryna Hrushetska,
CAFM Director
July 2006

 

Sovereign Threads

A History of Palestinian Embroidery

ALO HAYATI

July-September 2006

The first museum exhibition of Palestinian embroidery and costumes hits Los Angeles this Summer. The exhibition, co-curated by Hanan Munayyer, co-founder of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation, and by the Palestinian social service organization In'aash, opens July 16 and runs until October 8, 2006. The exhibit focuses on the struggle to sustain a cultural heritage and identity. Featured will be costumes from different villages in the regions of historic (pre-1948) Palestine, including Ramallah, Jerusalem (Al Quds), Bethlehem and Galilee (Al Jalil), from the collection of Hanan and Farah Munayyer.

The exhibit throws the spotlight on wedding dresses, which are prepared several years before the bride's engagement, worn at the wedding and worn again throughout the marriage on ceremonial occasions. Each cluster of villages has its own style of traditional costume; the specific colors, stitches, and patterns in the dress easily distinguish it from those of a different region. On display are bridal dresses and accompanying headpieces and jewelry from the 1860's to the 1940's.

Guests at opening reception ( photo courtesy of Terence Patrick)

Textile arts have been of unique importance in the Middle East since antiquity. From the pre-biblical era and with each passing phase of history, the traditions of spinning, weaving, dyeing and embroidery have been held in high esteem. The effects of modernization and social issues have threatened the continuity of this legacy.

Although the majority of Palestinian women today wear modern dress, many enjoy wearing an embroidered jacket, abaya, shawl or scarf for special occasions. Old patterns are also kept alive in items for household decoration such as cushions, tablecloths and wall hangings.

Huguette Caland, artist and In'aash co-founder, who has her studio in Venice, California, has been instrumental in organizing this international collaboration. "The motifs in Palestinian costumes and embroidery are some of the most beautiful in the world and have influenced textile and fashion designs for years," says Caland.

PHF: ALO HAYATI   is a high quality magazine and we thank them for this gesture.

 

 

The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

September/October 2006

 

"Sovereign Threads" Palestinian Embroidery Exhibition

By Pat McDonnell Twair

"Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery," a world class exhibition of 1,500 pieces of 19th century and contemporary hand-sewn objects, remains on view through October 8 at the Craft and Folk Art Museum, 5814 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles.

The collection of Palestinian bridal and regional dresses, wall hangings, jackets, pillow cases, headpieces and scarves is on loan from Farah and Hanan Munayyer, founders of the Palestinian Heritage Foundation. The museum gift shop is also offering embroidery work sewn by Palestinian women in refugee camps. Proceeds will go to the women, who are struggling to preserve their culture and heritage despite living in a displaced and fragmented society

Jackets from the Bethlehem and Jerusalem region

Palestinian embroidery can be traced back to the 8th century. Its designs, unique to each village, have been passed down from mother to daughter over the generations. The Los Angeles exhibition features pre-1948 gowns of Bethlehem, Ramallah, Jerusalem and the Galilee.

Free family workshops on embroidery techniques are slated for Aug. 26 and Sept. 9 at the museum. A panel discussion by anthropologists, political scientists and historians will examine the effects of war and displacement on cultural traditions and notions of national identity. The panel will take place Sept. 17 at the Goethe Institute, from 4 to 7 p.m.


Dresses from the Hebron region

Museum hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday; and noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. For more information, call  (323) 937-4230.

 

 

THE JEWISH JOURNAL

of Greater Los Angeles

August 25, 2006

Can Artwork Mend Fences?

An exhibition of Palestinian embroidery at the Folk Art Museum

garners visitors, raises questions

by Naomi Pfefferman

 

 

Before tPHOTOhe Beirut airport closed during Israel's recent war with Hezbollah, a shipment of pillows, shawls and jackets sewn by Palestinian women living in Beirut refugee camps was sent off to Los Angeles' Craft and Folk Art Museum.

These objects, all exquisitely ornamented, were destined to become part of the exhibition, "Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery," where they would share space with richly decorated fare dating from 1830 to the 1940s. The show opened last month as Israel fought Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas near the Gaza Strip border.

While images of bombed cities and wounded and suffering victims on all sides dominated the news, "Threads" offered a different window into the region: a rare opportunity to view Palestinian embroidery, considered among the finest in the world, in what is perhapsthe first show of its kind in Los Angeles. The dazzling work -- traditionally created by women -- emphasizes the female life cycle.

On display are gowns embellished with vivid crimsons and detailed geometrical designs, symbolizing a girl's maturation and readiness for marriage (muted clothing is reserved for matrons).

A married woman's headdress from 1930s Bethlehem sports a tall, conical cap studded with Ottoman coins, coral beads and silken embroidery -- all connected to the delicate silver jewelry that was intended to hang over her dress.

Other gowns glow with wide swathes of multicolored, iridescent silk or cotton cloth, covered with stitching so vibrant it appears to undulate. The colors include magentas, oranges, reds and gelds; the meticulous patterns resemble Cyprus trees, double-edged combs or acanthus leaves and cup (symbolizing health and happiness), among other designs. Five circles on chest pieces from the once-Christian city of Bethlehem represent Jesus and the four Apostles.

Additional new works are for sale in the museum's gift shop, with all proceeds to go toward human services in Palestinian refugee camps, museum director Maryna Hrushetska told The Journal.

"Threads" (which closes on Oct. 8) has proven so popular, she added, that museum attendance is up more than 25 percent. It's the latest success for an official who has helped put her once-imperiled institution on the map on Wilshire Boulevard's Museum Row, with well-received exhibitions, such as the current "Tigers and Jaguars: L.A.'s Asian-Latino Art Phenomenon" (through Oct. 29), which burst stereotypes about folk art. "Sovereign Threads" follows suit -- but it weaves a story that may raise eyebrows for some in the Jewish community. While the show does not overtly refer to the recent fighting near the Gaza Strip, or to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in general, it subtly but unmistakably depicts the conflict from the Palestinian point of view.

The exhibition begins with a map of the region that makes no mention of Israel (it notes "Palestinian subdivisions according to the British Mandate," 1917-1948). A timeline in the show does not mention the ancient Israelite kingdoms, or the subsequent (and significant) Jewish presence in the Holy Land. Nor does it describe Arab offensives that precipitated at least two wars, as described by an analyst for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

The omissions are significant, several analysts explained. "All this effectively deligitimizes the historical Jewish presence in the land of Israel," said Yehudit Barsky, director of the division on the Middle East and international terrorism for the American Jewish Committee.

Barsky added that one exhibition sponsor, the A.M. Qattan Foundation also funds organizations such as the Arab American Anti-Discrimination
Committee and Orient House, "the symbol of Palestinian aspirations for autonomy and solidarity in Israeli Occupied Jerusalem," according to the Web site, orienthouse.org. Even the title of the exhibition -- and Hrushetska's take on it -- suggests it crosses cultural boundaries into the realm of advocacy for the Palestinians and their cause.

"The term 'sovereign' describes self-rule, autonomy, and independence -- all still painfully absent for Palestinians in the political sphere," Hrushetska wrote in the "Threads" brochure. "However, from a cultural perspective, the term takes on a more comprehensive meaning.... The costumes and embroidery on display are living records of Palestinian 'cultural sovereignty'.... As they revive a culture in peril, the Palestinian women who create contemporary embroidery in refugee camps are also preserving their own imperiled dignity."

When asked whether the show is biased, Hrushetska doesn't entirely say no. She ties "Threads" to a continuing debate among curators over what has come to be called "the politics of representation": Just who gets to tell a people's story? The debate emerged in sharp focus when museums attempted to describe Native American history from a United States perspective some years ago, Hrushetska said.

"As a curatorial policy, if I'm going to show somebody's culture, I will show it from their perspective -- that's the only authentic way," Hrushetska said. "If we did a history of Israeli embroidery, how would the Jewish community feel if Palestinians narrated it?"

Hrushetska, who grew up in Chicago and is in her late 30s, is quick to acknowledge that she is an unconventional museum director. Her background is in international relations, not art history or museum management. She believes that most people mistakenly view folk art as "quaint, nostalgic or something their grandparents used to do."

She wishes to help reframe traditional art in a contemporary, relevant light, while promoting cross-cultural understanding in Los Angeles and around the globe.

Yet such issues were far from her mind when she caught her first glimpse of Palestinian textiles 18 months ago, around the time she arrived at the museum. The setting was the ultramodern Venice home of 75-year-old artist Huguette Caland -- daughter of Lebanon's first president, Bishara al Khuri -- who is known for her own artwork, as well as for opening her home to salons frequented by Los Angeles' cultural community. In a corner of Caland's vast studio, Hrushetska spotted a brown velvet chaise lounge covered with pillows embroidered by Palestinian women in
Beirut refugee camps.

Hrushetska, a Ukrainian American who grew up in a house filled with her grandmother's embroidery, immediately assumed the pillows were Ukrainian. "Even though I consider myself a globalist, I defaulted to my own heritage," she said.

But she learned that her connection wasn't completely off mark: Eastern Orthodox Christians (including Ukrainians) reportedly made pilgrimages to Bethlehem, via Ramallah, from the 15th century onward. Some purchased embroidery samples as souvenirs of the Holy Land, which later entered the visual language of Ukrainian decor.

Caland told Hrushetska her pillows were created in workshops sponsored by the Association for the Development of Palestinian Camps (best known by its Arabic language acronym, INAASH), a United Nations non-governmental organization co-founded by Caland in 1969. INAASH provides refugee women with embroidery materials so they can supplement their incomes through international sale of their handiwork, Caland said.

"Because I'm very sensitive to the plight of women in conflict and war, I decided we need to show this work,'" Hrushetska told The Journal. She believes the work deserves to be shown, as well, because "Palestinian embroidery and costumes are known as some of the most beautiful in the folk art world."

Through Caland and other Arab American contacts, Hrushetska obtained funding for the exhibition (she declines to name the amount) and a curator,
Hanan Karaman Munayyer, who has studied and collected Palestinian costumes (along with her husband, Farah) since 1987.

The exhibition concludes with a video depicting women sewing in an INAASH workshop: "Our financial situation is hardly bearable, that's why we are
working," one participant says on camera.

"After six or seven hours, I can hardly hold the needle," another woman says. The museum gift shop has already sold almost $15,000 worth of their
handiwork, Hrushetska said; a number of items remain for sale, although the embroiderers ceased working during the recent fighting and were unable
to send additional fare while the Beirut airport was closed. (It has now reopened.)

So how can prospective buyers be sure their money will not fund anti-Israel causes? Hrushetska responds that INAASH is recognized as a U.N.
-sanctioned organization. (The group did sign onto a letter calling for the Palestinian right of return, according to the Web site administered by Al-Awda
-- The Palestinian Right of Return Coalition.)

When asked if "Threads" could be perceived as unfair, even irresponsible during a time when Israel is at war with Hamas and Hezbollah, Hrushetska
emphasized that the show was conceived long before the current crisis.

"But enough of this," she added. "I know the history of the region, and this and that U.N. resolution, and I'm tired of it. These conflicts will only diminish
when we start to humanize each other.... I think that this is an important exhibition for people to see so they start to humanize Palestinians.

"This show is not about the history of blame," she added. "It's about recognizing the dire situation that these women are in, not making a judgment on how they got there. It's saying, 'These women deserve to be recognized, because they've created something beautiful and relevant.'"

A panel discussion, "Culture, Conflict and Identity," in conjunction with the "Threads" exhibition, will take place Sept. 17 at the Goethe-Institute,
5750 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 100, Los Angeles. (323) 937-4230.

 

 

LOS ANGELES TIMES

September 25, 2006

 

Embellishing Tradition

A Craft and Folk Art Museum embroidery show displays ancient Palestinian designs ó

and a couple's devotion to preserving them.

By Scarlet Cheng,

Special to The Times

Hanan KColorfularaman Munayyer fell under the spell of Palestinian embroidery in 1987, when she saw a collection of dresses and accessories brought to New York by an antiques dealer. She and her husband are of Palestinian descent, but she says, "The beauty of the embroidery on these early 20th century dresses ó we saw it for the first time in that collection."

The dealer intended to sell off the 65 dresses piecemeal. But Munayyer, along with her husband Farah Joseph Munayyer, thought the collection was too important to be split apart. Embroidery, says Hanan Munayyer, is "one of the strongest expressions of Palestinian culture, and we were interested in promoting the Palestinian cultural image in a positive way."  So the couple took out a home equity loan and bought the entire lot. Once in possession of it, Munayyer says, "I knew there was so much we didn't know."

Dress from Beit Dajan at CAFAM ( photo courtesy of Terence Patrick)


Munayyer, a molecular biologist, put her research skills to use to dig into the history of their new possessions ó through books (only a handful were available then), textile experts and trips back to the Middle East.

Today the couple have collected more than 400 dresses, some dating to the 19th century, along with 1,100 other objects, including jewelry, headdresses, jackets and shawls, many embellished with the unique embroidery of the region. Highlights of the collection, including 35 dresses dating from the mid-19th century to mid-20th century, are on display at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in "Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery," curated by Munayyer, along with the Assn. for the Development of Palestinian Camps, or INAASH.

" 'Sovereign Threads' is an exhibition about both art and cultural identity," writes Maryna Hrushetska, the museum director, in the introduction to the exhibition brochure. "As these threads of tradition are passed through generations, they weave a fabric of cultural cohesiveness that testifies to the fact that neither war, conflict nor displacement can erase national identity." 

Munayyer, speaking by telephone from her home in West Caldwell, N.J., describes embroidery as "very much a woman's art and a woman's history." For Palestinian women, she says, embroidery is a tradition handed down from mother to daughter, a means of displaying skill and status, and a reminder of both ancient and near history.

It has also become a source of income. One section of the exhibition includes contemporary embroidery gathered by INAASH, an organization that, among other efforts, works to improve conditions in the camps by helping women there to sell their embroidery.

To promote Palestinian culture, the Munayyers have set up their own nonprofit, the Palestinian Heritage Foundation (www.palestineheritage.org).

Bethlehem "Shatweh"

For centuries the basic female garb in the region has been the thob, a long dress with long sleeves and embroidered segments on the chest, sleeves
and skirt. These embroidered panels were made separately, generally by the women in a family, then stitched onto the dress, although occasionally, more elaborate pieces were purchased from professionals. Simple embroidered dresses were worn day to day, even when working in the fields. The
more elaborately decorated garments, which could take a year to make, were kept for special occasions, as they are today.

 
Motifs have been passed down, some for 3,000 years. Typically, the designs are created with colored threads using both cross-stitching and couching,
in which a strand of thread is put down and then stitched in place by a thinner thread worked over it.

"Every region has its own distinctive style," Munayyer points out. "In the past, people didn't travel so much, so villages were relatively isolated."

She divided the exhibition into six main regions ó Jerusalem, El Khalil, Ramallah, Bethlehem, Jaffa / Lydda and Majdal / Gaza ó reflecting
variations in motifs, fabrics and even the cut of the dresses. Fabrics were purchased from commercial weavers ó varying from basic cotton and linen to silk and velvet ó and sometimes were pieced together in a striking manner. One outstanding example is a 1930s "heaven and hell" (janeh-w-nar) dress from Jerusalem, which alternates vivid strips of green and red silk.

"Traditionally, in the Muslim religion, green represents heaven," says Munayyer, "and red represents hell."

Of course, there are also shared attributes among works from different areas. The chest panel of the "heaven and hell" dress is made up of an arrangement of five circles, one in the center and four around it, a motif found also in thob from Bethlehem. This pattern evokes a vase with five flowers in it, and also refers to the Tree of Life.

Some motifs have readily recognizable references, such as birds, flowers, and trees. Others are highly stylized and hardly recognizable, such as "Pasha's tent," which might be a bird's-eye view of a square tent, or "tall palms," which looks like stacked arrowheads. The latter, says Munayyer, refers to the scales on the sides of palm trees after older fronds have fallen off.

Another ancient motif is the acanthus leaf and cup, running on vertical panels on the lower half of a 1930s dress from El Khalil, on the West Bank.
Here, a stemmed cup, referring to the cup of plenty, emerges between two leaves with baroquely curved edges. "It's a very old pattern and has been found in decorations in tombs and architecture from as early as the 6th century in such places as Jericho, Palestine and Syria," Munayyer says.

Over two decades of dedicated research and collecting, what has struck her most? "The diversity and richness, even now it's astounding,"
Munayyer says. "We never thought there would be so much in such a small area."

 

 

In response to the article published in the

Jewish Journal

 

I read the article published by the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles more than once. At first, my reaction was indignation and even inside rebellion at the wording of ideas, or at the links made between totally unrelated but synchronous events, such as "the show opened last month as Israel fought Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas near the Gaza Strip border". Another one was "can prospective embroidery buyers be sure their money will not fund anti-Israel causes"?  This is a total exclusion of events from their real context, and a distorted association of these facts in a
way directed towards false propaganda for Israel.........

Well, in short, my first reaction was anger, but a second reading revealed a confession drawn as if in spite of the will of the author, on different points, to the effect of authentic praise! And coming from the Jewish Journal, it is worth a lot.

Reading between the lines, anyone can see that this acknowledgement, admitted unwillingly in spite of the author, of Palestinian embroidery being considered "among the finest in the world, the richest in color and design, the story it relates of our people, an art expression of the developmental stages of womanhood in Palestinian society, the preservation of the identity of a people displaced, and in so forth and so on -- traditionally created by women -- emphasizes the female life cycle, other gowns glow with wide swathes of multicolored, iridescent silk or cotton cloth, covered with stitching so vibrant it appears to undulate"... is a forced acknowledgement of the aspects of beauty and value in this art, which the author actually did admit. I think any reader with average common sense and a critical mind can realize how biased some of the observations are.

Well, in brief, the article gave me a sense of victory, pride, and well being which I suppose is the complete opposite of the message the author tried to convey in the article. When so much beauty is produced by 'demons', I think this compels any reasonable person to rethink whether the description of the 'demon' is appropriate. This message has great importance especially nowadays.

Humanity should be proud of what is being done here: this work is a tacit but very powerful message to humanity of what Palestinians really are.

Maryna Hrushetska, CAFAM Director, should be commended on her daring step to host such a cultural and artistic collection and for her excellent
answers in response to the biased author.

Rawan, Dubai

 

PHF and CPPH Coordinate Efforts in Support of Palestinian Culture

The Palestinian Heritage Foundation and the Washington based Committee to Preserve Palestinian Heritage have been coordinating their efforts in promoting Palestinian art and culture to the American public through art displays and exhibits. Most recently, PHF had utilized several items of CPPH's collection in the exhibit "Sovereign Threads: A History of Palestinian Embroidery" currently on display at the Craft and Folk Art Museumin Los Angeles, CA.

The Committee to Preserve Palestinian Heritage was established in 1987 by the late Dr. Hala Salam Maksoud and Malea Kiblan Esq. to promote Arab and more specifically Palestinian art and customs. The Palestinian Heritage Foundation is pleased to join CPPH in promoting shared cultural goals.  

Jerusalem Dress on loan from CPPH

 


 

PHF Mail........ In response to the historic Palestinian exhibit at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles, California.

 

Dear Hanan and Farah

I have  read the news and details about the exhibition your foundation will  have in Los Angeles on July 15 for three months. I believe that is a great achievement and an excellent cultural promotion for the Palestinian heritage and a great cause. Congratulations for the great success you have had, and for the good friends you are gaining in the US.

Samih and Samira Darwazah, Jordan

 

Dear Farah and Hanan,

First, this e-mail is overdue, I meant to write and let you know how happy I was to finally meet you and Hanan and to be given the lovely tour of the CAFAM subset of your wonderful collection. I have returned to CAFAM twice since then to admire again the extraordinary collection. Thanks again.

I bought your video and enjoyed watching it very much. The models are very pretty, and elegant, and the narrator is adorable: is she your daughter? Again, thank you very much for collecting this magnificent collection and for researching it. I hope to have the pleasure of meeting you again.

Ranwa, LA

 

Dear Hanan and Farah,

Thank you very much for the link below. The article is very interesting. Politics touches even embroidery...I am an embroiderer too in my free time, so I know how it is hard to make something from nothing... But I live in a peaceful place, without any dangers, opposite to these brave Palestinian women.

BTW, did you give my e-mail address to Clive May? I am very glad to have a contact with him, thank you.

Warm regards.
Iwona Rychter, Poland

 

Azizi Farah,

Thank you for emailing this link to the article. It is obvious that the museum Director was subjected to a lot of pressure when she was interviewed by the reporter. The reporter even attempted to question her credentials. It is truly frustrating to see people in the American Jewish media propagating the notion that Palestinian embroidery is nothing but a byproduct of ancient Israelite heritage. This museum exhibit presents a challenge to this false notion and I commend you and Hanan for your great efforts serving our cause.

Best Regards,
Salem Mikdadi, NY

 

This is what I always asked about.  They used to sell Palestinian pillows in the Ukrainian Cathedral in Washington, DC - and I actually have a Palestinian dress and would love to have an opportunity to buy more.  My daughter's closest friend is a Palestinian girl, who would love to have items from her ancestral culture as well ... but they never seem to be available. I'm grateful for this article.

Thanks,
Cami Huk, NJ

 

Dearest Munayyer family,

I love it! It's wonderful to know more history of your brilliant collection. Warmest congratulations to you all!

Naomi Shihab Nye, TX

 

Hi Farah,

I was finally able to get a hold of the museum today.  I spoke with the lady who is in charge of sales at the museum's gift shop. She had not thought about carrying your videos.  When I explained that I knew people who wanted them, she remembered the video and was very enthusiastic about carrying them. 

Cynthia Horne, LA

 

Hello Farah:

Thank you so much for e-mailing me back, I really appreciate it, and please add me to your mailing list , I would love to stay in touch with the events that your organization do, maybe one day you will be somewhere close to Texas and I can come and check out the show.

thank you.

 

It is stunning.  Overwhelming.  You have done a great job!

Anne Marie Weiss-Armush, TX

 

Dear Hanan,

Thank you and Hania for including and sending me the information on Palestinian Heritage. I enjoyed reading about it and will pass the website link to friends. You are doing a great job.  It is fantastic. I'm so proud of your work.

Best regards,
Aida Hafez
, DC

 

Dear Hanan and Farah,

I am so pleased to be on your mailing list. The website and the work you do is so impressive.

Thank you for caring for my Palestinian textiles these last years. I think that it is time for them to become part of your permanent
collection. It is a privilege to make the donation and be in some small way, a part of your efforts.

Christen, NY

 

Dear Mr. Farah

Thanks for the prompt response and I appreciate the great work youíve done to preserve the Palestinian Heritage and our traditional dress. I am Palestinian currently working in Dubai and Iíve always admired our traditional dress. I was searching in Google for information about our traditional dress and thatís how I heard about your organization and the effort you are making to preserve our heritage.

Currently I have a project regarding our traditional dress but still discussing it with some friends and resources, and once the idea is clear and starts heading towards the implementation phase I might need some help or may be partnership from your side. And that is why I need the DVD now to help me in my planning for the project.

Best regards,
Hanadi Awad, Dubai, UAE

 

Dear Hanan and Farah

I did see the Jewish Journal article, which I found complimentary in their own way. I also attended a fabulous panel discussion that
CAFAM organized yesterday.

Ranwa, CA

 

Farah and Hanan

Attached is a link to an article published in the LA Times about the excellent work that you and Hanan have been doing for a number of years. We are all proud, Farah Bey. Thanks for your dedication.

Victor & Emmy Abboud, Canada

 

I was able to view the link, enjoyed it and found it very impressive. No doubt u must b very proud of your accomplishment. I hope it was well attended as it truly deserves the attention.

Harold Harrison

 

Dear Farah and Hanan,

You know Farah and Hanan, I really didnít know much about both of you until I read articles about your background.  Really, what you have done in the United States is not only FANTASTIC, but you fought well to be visible.  I really envy you and wish I were closer to be able to be visible of my roots. Whatever we do is always not enough. What you have created Hanan is for life. You have risen what was being buried. You have shown the  history of our womenís pride.

I have to thank you for letting me share all the great moments with you.

Susan Khalil, UAE

 

Dear Hanan,

The Los Angeles Times article was very interesting, and thanks for sending it. For a change it was nice to see the analytical and historical approaches respected and carried on without any political bias as was the case in the other journal. We visited the museum with a group of friends a weekend ago, and as I expected, it was a great reflection of our wonderful heritage. Again, I am so proud of who you are and what you do, both Farah and yourself.

Muna, CA


Hanan and Farah

It goes without saying that the LA Times article is a fairly honest article. It gives credit to the beautiful collection and to the hard and diligent work and vision you and Hanan silently contributed through many long years and it elevates the collection to its proper dignity and place.

I had forwarded this website to many of my friends with a short introductory note trying to juxtapose the image your collection presents to the biased image usually offered by the US media about "the culture of death" and showing the proof that Palestine always existed, despite all the false claims, and had a fine culture that has been copied by many in the western world through visitors and pilgrims to the Holy Land since the Middle Ages. May God bless you, Hanan, your family and your Foundation.

Adib, NJ

 

Dear Auntie and Amo,

What a wonderful article. The journalist really did a good job of capturing the reason (your passion) for Palestinian heritage and how that plays such a big role in the work you do. The exhibition room in The Craft and Folk Art Museum looks beautifully done. We are so proud of your work! I am forwarding this article on to friends and family; especially encouraging my family in California to visit the museum!

Suzy, NJ

 

Palestinian Costumes & Embroidery: A Precious Legacy

A Video Review By Shira

For the video review by Shira click the link below:

http://www.shira.net/videorevws/palestinian.htm

 

 

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Last Updated: Wednesday, February 24, 2016