To order video contact:
Palestinian Heritage Foundation
P.O. Box 531
West Caldwell, NJ 07007-0531
Featuring groups of costumes, representing towns and villages in the areas around Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Al-Khalil, Majdal, Gaza, Jaffa, Galilee and the Naqab desert. This very well-received 35-minute video documentary examines Palestinian dress from antiquity through the Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab and Ottoman Turkish periods up to the 20th century.
In it, a distinct series of resemblances is revealed that link present-day Palestinian costumes to Canaanite spinning, weaving and dyeing tradition that evolved into a generalized Mediterranean style in the Greco-Roman period.
Also included is a short summary of the fascinating historical development of textile arts and embroidery in the Arab world, containing photographs of surviving pieces of ancient textiles from the Middle East on display in European and American museums.
Devoting considerable attention to detailed close-ups of stitches and patterns, the video looks at the impact of environment on such motifs. Viewers interested in copying the patterns are enabled to do so thanks to the close-up enlargements.
Palestinian Costumes and Embroidery: A Precious Legacy
By Beth Noland
I have watched the video presentation “Palestinian Costumes and Embroidery: A Precious Legacy” several times and each time I was more impressed. The tape presents a balanced approach to the folk art of Palestinian costume, transitioning from stitch details to the overall costume designs themselves in such a way as to keep my interest and make me disappointed when the tape is finished, although for the purpose of this presentation, its length is just right.
The narration is well done and the script is engaging. The choreography is just right: not too much action but just enough to show off each piece without leaving the viewer bored. The brief references to places on the map of Palestine are quite necessary and provide good visual points of reference for the next segments of costume narration.
I really cannot think of any criticism, except that Tape #2 is needed for the next chapter in a rich saga of folk art that intrigues so many of us viewers.