The Palestinian Culture Center holds the second of its two annual exhibitions for 2010 at Bayt Lothan. The show, which is open to the public, includes a large collection of textile-based traditional handmade cross-stitch as well as pottery from Hebron, books about Palestine in English and Arabic, posters.
The Palestinian Culture Center is a non-profit organization that was established in Jordan in 1993. It aims to (1) preserve the rich heritage and culture of Palestine, (2) help empower women and their families in the Palestinian refugee camps become economically independent, and (3) sustain needy Palestinians in their homeland and in the Diaspora.
This year continued to be an active year for the Center with the continued affects of the global financial crisis which placed a further strain on the poor in Jordan and in occupied Palestine. Furthermore, the continued blockade on Gaza by Israel, and its occupation of Palestinian lands has made the situation dire, and the need for aid more urgent. As a result, the Center provides aid to Palestinians in the homeland by providing financial aid to needy families, health care, and university scholarships. In Jordan it aims to pay fair salaries for the 500 or so women who do the embroidery work as well as pay for their transportation from the camps, and a bonus for excellent quality work as a motivation.
• Traditional cross-stitch embroidery of dresses, linens, shawls, cushions, table runners, cards, coasters, belts, purses, bookmarks and more
• Handmade ceramics from Hebron
• Books, posters, cards, key chains, kafiya’s and DVDs
• Food sale of traditional Palestinian food on Thursday only including baked goods and traditional plates
• Palestinian traditional dance (dabkah) performed on Monday and Thursday in the evenings
Palestinian embroidery using needle and silk thread is a manifestation of the Palestinian identity as it has evolved over the ages. An age old art, all Palestinian ladies, young and old, would spend hours embroidering their trousseau, dresses, shawls and cushions. Using geometric shapes at first, and then evolving to depicting images from nature surrounding them, the dresses are famous for their flowery designs and bold natural colors of indigo and red. Symbols of the ubiquitous cypress trees surrounding the orange groves, roses, jasmine and the famous olive tree are typical motifs in these dresses.
The exhibition, which is open for the public, will be held at Bayt Lothan in Salmiya for 4 days starting Monday the November 29th through Thursday December 2nd. It is open to the public from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm and 4:30 to 8:30 pm.