Palestinian Embroidery

Palestinian Embroidery

17 September 2019

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This six-part course, led by Palestinian artist Joanna Barakat, centers on the art of tatreez – a form of embroidery originating in Palestine. The first session lays the groundwork with a presentation on the history of tatreez, tracing its evolution in form and meaning in response to the events of 1948. Participants then take up the needle and thread to cross-stitch a Star of Bethlehem pattern, guided by a prior demonstration. Over the following days, discussions and tutorials introduce participants to other motifs local to different regions of Palestine, from Jaffa and Ramallah to Hebron and Gaza. The course concludes with individual cross-stitch projects on waste canvas that can be appliquéd on a garment or tote bag.

Course structure

17 September
Session 1: Introduction

● The history of tatreez before and after 1948

● How tatreez evolved in form and meaning as artists reinterpreted the medium

● Cross-stitching demonstration

● The materials used in cross-stitching

● How to cross-stitch a Star of Bethlehem pattern

1 October
Session 2: Discussing and cross-stitching motifs from Jaffa


15 October
Session 3: Discussing and cross-stitching motifs from Ramallah


29 October
Session 4: Discussing and cross-stitching motifs from Hebron and Gaza


5 November
Session 5: Using waste canvas to embroider on fabric


20 November
Session 6: Completing piece from Session 5

Instructor: Joanna Barakat, Artist
Age: 16+