MER KA BA installation fuses faith and fashion

September 13, 2013 2:43:18 PM PDT
They're fashion designers first and foremost but their designs go beyond clothes.

Inspired by ancient motifs and tile patterns found in religions around the world, the New York-based fashion collective threeASFOUR presents its latest project, MER KA BA, at The Jewish Museum.

MER KA BA, referencing mystical aspects of Judaism, Islam, and even Ancient Egypt, is a multimedia exhibition fusing avant-garde couture, architecture, and video projections.

Gabriel Asfour, Adi Gil, and Angela Donhauser, the designers of threeASFOUR, were born in Lebanon, Israel, and Tajikistan, respectively. Their outfits appeared on the runway this week, but the clothes are so sculptural that they fit well at a museum.

A closer look at the dresses on display reveals geometric patterns from a variety of religions. Origami creates the shapes on some outfits, while others are made from a 3-D printer. Consider it "geometric fabric."

Also featured is an architectural structure of a six-pointed star, which visitors can enter for "spiritual immersion."

The project is a happy coincidence of high fashion and high holiday, going out at the end of Fashion Week, and at the beginning of the Jewish Holiday of Yom Kippur.

Opening on September 15, MER KA BA will remain on view at The Jewish Museum through February 2, 2014.

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