The new Dream Weavers exhibition at Tel Aviv’s Diaspora Museum tells the story of the world’s most significant Jewish fashion designers.
The exhibit covers Ralph Lauren, Donna Karan, Alber Elbaz, Sonia Rykiel, Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs, Arnold Scassi, Diane von Fürstenberg, Ilana Goor, Sarah Moon, Yigal Azrouël, Kobi Halperin, Avshalom Gur, Natalie Capell, Avi Tenzer and Inbar Spector.
Running through May 17th, the exhibit covers the contribution of Jewish designers to the world of fashion. For the first time in Israel, a group exhibition featuring dresses, jewelry and accessories from an international dream team of 20 Jewish fashion designers. Some of the works were especially created for this exhibition at Beit Hatfutsot.
The exhibition presents the fashion world’s greatest success stories, and the trajectories followed by traditional Jewish tailors as they immigrated to New York to become workers in early-twentieth-century sweatshops, founded the first large clothing companies such as Levi Strauss’ jeans company, and went on to establish the world’s international fashion empires, which provide consumers with clothing ranging from ready-to-wear outfits to refined couture confections that reflect our collective dreams.
“Dream Weavers provided me with an unprecedented opportunity to learn about the fashion world and to better understand the ways in which it impacts our lives and shapes our perceptions, ” says Dr. Orit Shaham Gover, the chief curator of Beit Hatfutsot. “At the same time, this process also raised numerous questions: What do these clothes say about us as a society? Do clothes truly make their wearers? And to what extent can one detect the Jewish origins of these designers in their works? The answers are in the eyes of the beholder.”
Exhibition curator Shelly Werthime quotes Ralph Lauren: “I don’t design clothes, I design dreams.” And Alber Elbaz: “I design from my heart, making the fantasy, the dream, into a reality.” Dream Weavers is an exhibition about the creators and producers of fashion, who thread stories and weave dreams. The display focuses on the beauty of their creations, which are presented as if suspended in midair. In this spirit, the gallery was designed as a surreal space in which the play of mirrors and reflections creates an illusion of floating in a space between reality and dream.