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TRC exhibition Dressing the "Stans": Textiles, dress and jewellery from Central Asia

Tuesday 12 September 2017 - Friday 22 December 2017
TRC Leiden Textile Research Centre
Hogewoerd 164
2311 HW Leiden

On 12 September the new TRC Gallery exhibition 'Dressing the Stans: Textiles, dress and jewellery from Central Asia' was opened by the famous Oxford scholar, Dr. Peter Frankopan, the author of the widely acclaimed book The Silk Roads: A New History of the World (2015). The exhibition is co-funded by the Central Asia Initiative at Leiden University and will run until 22 December.

Dressing the "Stans": Textiles, dress and jewellery from Central AsiaHunting cloth (chireh), used in North Afghanistan to disguise the hunter. Afghanistan, mid-20th century. TRC 2016.1773

As part of the 2017 Asia Year celebrations in Leiden, the Textile Research Centre is presenting a fascinating and colourful exhibition about textiles, dress and jewellery from Central Asia: the so-called ‘Stans’ (‘Land of…’), namely Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

The exhibition will include traditional textiles, garments and accessories for men, women and children, from all parts of this vast and relatively unknown part of the world. On display there will be many items including ikats, velvets and embroideries from the ‘Stans’ in general. But there will also be more specific items, such as Afghan chapans (the type of coat made famous by ex-President Hamid Karzai, and which he wore during his visit to Leiden in 2008), buzkashi apparel (used in the "goat-grabbing" game of Central Asia) , as well as hunting hoods and cloths, used to 'hide' the hunter. From Uzbekistan there will be examples of the famous suzani embroideries and ikat dresses and coats.

An important element of the exhibition is a beautiful collection of ethnic jewellery from among the Turkmen of Afghanistan, on special loan from May and Rolando Schinasi, who lived and worked in Afghanistan for many years prior to the start of the civil war in 1978.

The exhibition will be open to the general public from 12th September until 22nd December 2017.


Those who are interested to attend, please register at info@trc-leiden.nl This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

he Textile Research Centre (TRC) was set up in 1991 as an independent foundation and is since 2009 housed at Hogewoerd 164, in the centre of historic Leiden, The Netherlands. Here it has the use of an exhibition space, a large depot, offices and workrooms. The basic aim of the TRC is to give the study of textiles its proper place in the field of the humanities and social sciences. It does so by providing courses and lectures, carrying out research and by the presentation of textiles and dress from all over the world. The two main focal paints of the TRC are (a) dress and identity: what people wear in order to say who they are and (b) pre-industrial textile technology. 

The TRC is officially recognised as a Culturele ANBI ('Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling'), which confirms its charitable status, as well as making financial donations tax deductible for Dutch tax payers at a favourable rate. In order to support the work of the TRC, it has and is building up various collections, including a Textile and Garment Collection and a Reference Collection. In addition, research is aided by the TRC’s library (some 2000 books, a large collection of articles, as well as visual material such as photographs and postcards).

Hogewoerd 164, 2311 HW Leiden. Tel. +31 (0)71 5134144 / +31 (0)6 28830428   info@trc-leiden.nl

Opening times: Monday to Thursday: 10.00-16.00 hrs, other days by appointment.

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