Cherchez la femme
Jewish Museum Berlin
– 2 July 2017
In many cultures, women’s hair is considered intimate and seductive, and is the reason why custom demands its concealment. An exhibition at the Jewish Museum in Berlin looks back at the history of the veil and lets the women speak for themselves.
Traditions of female head coverings go back to antiquity – in those times, however, it was a right reserved for privileged women and served to differentiate them visually from slaves. Today, the headscarf is often a controversial issue and viewed by many as a symbol of oppression. However, there are many different views on this subject and women have their own motivations for choosing to cover their hair – or not – as the exhibition clarifies. In line with its subtitle – “Wig, Burqa, Wimple”, the exhibition “Cherchez la femme” [Find the Women] looks at the various forms of coverings that exist, be they cultural, religious or fashionable, while simultaneously taking the visitor on a geographical and historical journey.
A lecture and panel discussion will take place as part of the exhibition on 29 June 2017. Reina Lewis, lecturer in Cultural Studies at the London College of Fashion, will give a talk on the relationship between religiosity and fashion, followed by fashion designer Meriem Lebdiri and wig maker Daniela Kaner taking part in a discussion about identity, fashion, and self-empowerment.