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Past exhibition: Tatreez Inheritance

In Wafa Ghnaim’s curatorial debut, Tatreez Inheritance examines the presence of Palestinian embroidery in the United States through a diasporic lens, asserting and affirming the power of material culture and art history in preserving a nation’s identity. Over the past 75 years, the dispossession, displacement and dispersion of the Palestinian people across the globe has circulated precious textiles and dresses throughout Europe and North America. At the heart of Tatreez Inheritance are a collection of historic and contemporary dresses, accessories and artifacts that highlights a tremendous inheritance — one of cultural heritage — assured to every Palestinian across the globe. Tatreez Inheritance was on view at Museum of the Palestinian People from March 31, 2023 through September 23, 2023.

About the curator

Wafa Ghnaim is a Palestinian researcher, author and educator who began learning embroidery from her mother, award-winning artist Feryal Abbasi-Ghnaim, when she was two years old. Her first book, “Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora” (2018), documents the traditional patterns and stories passed on to her by her mother. Wafa has since become a leading educator in the field of Levantine embroidery and textile art history, as the first-ever Palestinian embroidery instructor at the Smithsonian Museum, Curator for the Museum of the Palestinian People in Washington, D.C., and most recently, Senior Research Fellow for The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Wafa continues her mother’s educational legacy through The Tatreez Institute (Tatreez & Tea), a global arts education initiative she began in 2016 teaching courses in Palestinian embroidery and lecturing at leading institutions, museums and universities around the world. Wafa has since been featured in major media outlets, including Vogue Magazine which named her and her mother “the world’s leading guardians of tatreez”.