What’s On
 May 2018

Photo by Lena Sobeh
Interactive Discussion
The Intifada and the National Dimension of Palestinian Embroidery

Speaker: Dr. Islah Jad
Wednesday, 2 May | 17:30 - 18:30

When the first intifada broke out in 1987 Palestinian embroidery was used as an effective weapon and a new means of resistance. In response to the Zionist occupation’s confiscation of Palestinian flags during demonstrations, and its prohibition against the display of the flag’s colours in public spaces, women of the West Bank began to produce “intifada gowns”, adorning their grey, blue and black cloth with embroidered national designs and symbols as visual representations of their resistance. Thus despite the view of embroidery as a distinctly feminine concern, its identification with resistance gave women the opportunity to challenge their traditional roles and assume new ones. Similarly resistance through embroidery offered the opportunity to do away with class distinctions among women, and to turn women with no social or political privileges into active and influential participants in resistance efforts.

The intifada gowns and the narratives of the women who embroidered them, presented in the Labour of Love exhibition at the Palestinian Museum, will constitute the starting point of a discussion led by Dr Islah Jad. The discussion will delve into the national dimension of embroidery from a woman’s perspective, and will seek to comprehend the role of women in resistance during the 1987 intifada, and the contradictory effects of that intifada on women and the women’s movement, in addition to understanding the national dimension of the activities of women who continue to embroider professionally in Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan, women whose narratives are rarely recognised in the context of national struggle.

The talk will be in Arabic.

Karam Al-Maloukh, decorated pens, 2005 and 2007, silk threads and pens, made in Bir Al-Saba prison, and hand-made prayer beads, 2006, mixed media, made in Ofer prison, courtesy of Karam Al-Maloukh, by Kayané Antreassian
Embroidery of Love and Resistance: Pieces from Prison

Speaker: Karam Maloukh
Saturday, 5 May | 14:00 – 15:00

As political prisoners in Israeli jails, men embroider to counter boredom, to resist their incarceration, and make gifts for loved ones. These objects, frequently mingle expressions of national pride with romantic love. During periods when craft materials are banned from entering prisons, the very making of these pieces requires clever improvisation of tools and materials. Prisoners unravel threads from their clothing and use medicine as chemical dye.

Memories and details about the prison’s experience that we haven’t heard about before. Karam Al-Maloukh, a released prisoner, will tell us about this experience.

The talk will be in Arabic.

Photo by Lena Sobeh
Transformations in the Textile Industry of Gaza and al-Majdal

Speaker: Dr. Rashad al-Madani
Sunday, 6 May| 11:00 – 12:30
Place: the Islamic University, Gaza/Conferences Hal,
Tayba Building

Among the many characteristics that distinguish the Gazan embroidered dress from other dresses belonging to different regions in Historic Palestine, the historical value of its textile is what renders it unique. Dr. Rashad al-Madani, a researcher in the fields of oral history and Palestinian heritage, will discuss the developments that the textile industry has witnessed in Gaza and al-Majdal. Such developments manifested in Palestinian traditional customs and the oral history narrated around the textile industry such as Palestinian folkloric songs pre the 1948 Nakbah.

The seminar will also shed light on the transformations that occurred to the raw materials used in the textile industry post the Nakbah and how the industry has gradually shifted from al-Majdal to Gaza to ultimately disappear. This declared the end of a craft that not only generated income for many Palestinians but also carried a great historical value. The seminar will be moderated by the Gazan writer, Ghareeb al-Asqalani, and the Collections Registrar at the Palestinian Museum, Baha al-Jubeh via video conference from Ramallah.

The talk will be in Arabic.

Photo by Iwan Baan
Museums and Recognition Politics in Settler-Colonial
States: Towards Palestinian Alter/natives

In collaboration with the Master Programme in Israeli Studies
and the Bachelor Programme of Contemporary Visual Art at Birzeit University
Speaker: Dr. Lila Abu-Lughod

Wednesday, 9 May | 14:00 

Abu-Lughod will reflect on Palestine’s political impasses in relation to the experiences of other colonized places and people, inspired by current debates in critical indigenous and native studies about settler colonialism in places like Australia and North America. Her lecture focusses on the promises and pitfalls of new imaginations of sovereignty and self-determination that are emerging in indigenous activism and how they relate to the politics of museums. Through a journey that will take us to key museums and to rituals marking recognition and apology around the world, she ends by raising questions about how we might interpret the current emergence of Palestinian cultural projects like the Palestinian Museum. Can the settler colonial framework burst open the Palestinian political imagination?

The talk will be in English with availability of interpretation.

Dig and Seek: Young Excavators

In partnership with PITTI Academy,
Palestinian lnstitute for Training, Teaching & Innovation
Saturday, 12 May | 15:00 -18:00

This workshop aims to foster and develop the excavation and research skills of school students, skills which are considered essential for museums work around the world.

The workshop includes exciting scientific activities such as dinosaurs’ bones excavation, the dark room, ice excavation, origami dinosaur, riddles, and other mind-provoking activities.

This workshop is suitable for children aging between 6 and 15 years old. The participants will be divided into teams of 4 to reinforce the value of teamwork and collaboration to successfully accomplish the experiments. The winning teams will be rewarded with prizes.

 For more details about the registration fees and for registration, please fill out the online form here

Photo by Faris Shomali
The Summer Camp of  the Labour of Love exhibition
June 25 – August 1, 2018
Schools may register for the activities of the summer camp
at the Palestinian Museum at: activities@palmuseum.org
Places are limited. The Palestinian Museum team will contact schools
to confirm registration and exact dates.

University Students 

To book an interactive tour, please fill the online form here