On Sep 21st, 2018, QAI was thrilled to start its first collaboration and outreach on the US’s west coast by attending the opening of the DeYoung’s Contemporary Muslim Fashions Exhibition in San Fransisco, CA.
According to the exhibition, Contemporary Muslim Fashions showcases 80 fashion pieces and 40 photographs of garments from established and emerging designers in high-end fashion, streetwear, sportswear, and couture from all across the Muslim world. For instance, Qatari fashion icons and designers have key participation and presence in this exhibition.
Qatari fashion designers like Wadha Al-Hajri , Fahad bin Mohammed (known as “Fahad Signature“), and Mariam Al Remaihi, in addition to Qatari jewelry designers such as Papillon Jewelry have all contributed with unique designs that reflect both Qatari identity and Muslim modest-wear. Sheikha Raya Al-Khalifa lent a couple of her traditional outfits and her unique “Fanar,” Arabic for traditional lamp, clutch.
The exhibition’s “grand finale” is dedicated to Her Highness Sheikha Moza bin Nasser Al-Misnad, with four distinctive outfits from her fashion collection accomplished by a short film demonstrating Her Highness’s international humanitarian efforts, especially in education. The exhibited pieces are symbolic of Her Highness’s career not only in diplomacy as the Father Emir’s wife, but also as a prominent leader, philanthropist, and advocate for education through her worldly initiatives, such as Qatar Foundation and Education Above All.
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“We are so pleased to have so many Qatari loans in the exhibition. The exhibition ends with a grand finale with four exquisite pieces from Sheikha Moza, and they have really captured the essence of everything that we want to express in this exhibition; that women are stylish, world leaders, and making positive changes in the world.”
– Jill D’Alessandro, Curator in Charge of Costume and Textile Arts at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and Co-Curator of Contemporary Muslim Fashions exhibition
Diana Untermeyer, who is QAI’s Cultural Advisor, facilitated the loans between the Qatari designers and participants and the exhibition team, and QAI’s Director of Development & Senior Fellow for Culture, Fatima Al-Dosari, managed the outreach of the opening through social media.
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“It is exciting to have this show on Contemporary Muslim Fashions, here in San Francisco, and what was really important is that we had the support of Sheikha Moza and Sheikha Al-Mayassa for this exhibition as a lender but also seeing what’s happening in Qatar in culture field at the great institutions and programming there, as well as how we can participate in that cultural dialogue from San Fransisco, New York, and elsewhere.”
– Max Hollein, New Director of The Metropolitan Museum (The Met)/Former San Fransisco Museum of Fine Arts.”
About Contemporary Muslim Fashions
It is the first major museum exhibition to explore the complex and diverse nature of Muslim dress codes worldwide. Organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, this pioneering exhibition examines how Muslim women—those who cover and those who do not—have become arbiters of style within and beyond their communities and, in so doing, have drawn attention to the variations and nuances of their daily lives.