Ruth Schreiber‘s new video “Sheitels” is featured in the exhibition “Cherchez La Femme: Wigs, Burka, Wimple” at the Jewish Museum Berlin, Germany.
The exhibition takes place from March 31 until July 2nd, 2017.
Headlines and swimwear, headscarves and demonstrations, fashion shows and papal audiences – how much religiosity secular societies can tolerate is shown in this current exhibition. In the 1950s and 1960s, style icons like Grace Kelly wore the headscarf as a fashion accessory. Today, religious context is the main reason why women cover their hair. These traditions go back to ancient times, when status and fashion determined which women were veiled. Hair was still regarded as too intimate to be shown publicly for many cultures.
Today, women in Judaism and Islam find new ways to combine their religious traditions with a modern lifestyle. Conflicts in masculine societies are inevitable; the boundaries of what is acceptable are under constant negotiation.
The Cherchez la femme exhibition presents a wide range of ideas and opinions regarding head and body coverings. Traditional ideas are juxtaposed with current fashion, religion with secular societies.
How do those who are often ignored in the heat of the debate describe their own situation? Whether complying with a strict Islam, or secular Muslims, religion as a private matter or wearing a headscarf as a sign of cultural self-determination – diverse women’s voices are heard in the exhibition. Rounding out the exhibition are works by Jewish and Muslim artists. Each of these women deals in her own way with the forces at work between tradition and participation in society and current social discourses.
Ruth Schreiber also has 3 works in the exhibition “Tzena Urena” which opens at the Ben Gurion University in Beersheva on Tuesday April 4th, at the end of the day of conference on the same topic.
Ruth is showing her video “Kasher, Kasher, Kasher”; her papier maché wombs “Be Fruitful and Multiply”, and her brand-new bookcase “Progress At Last”, containing (blank) miniature books with only women’s names on the spines, highlighting the exponential growth of Jewish learning among women in the modern era, as compared to the previous 2 millennia.
After several months in Beersheva the exhibition will move on to the Ein Harod Museum of Art.