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Fri, Mar 31


New York


Decorative Arts Exhibition & Talk

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Time & Location

Mar 31, 2023, 6:00 PM – Apr 21, 2023, 6:00 PM

New York, 200 E 38th St, New York, NY 10016, USA

About The Event

"From the Earthly Paradise" is the culmination of a collaborative exhibition that facilitates the experience of mixed reality, combining different mediums and generating a winding dialogue between old and new. Displaying some of the most impressive pieces from The Muzeul Textilelor in Băița and Hărţăgani, western Romania, especially headscarves and towels, alongside hand embroidery and embellishments made by the artist Rodica-Ioana Ghilea, the exhibition reveals Romania's rich tradition in the field of textiles and decorative objects, reconfirming the appetite of artists and the public for this type of craft.

The Muzeul Textilelor collection presented here and curated by Dr. Florica Zaharia, Conservator Emerita of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and the Muzeul Textilelor director, features surviving examples of exquisite craftsmanship, revealing the artistic skill of the unknown makers and the world in which they were created, the early 20th century South Romania, Romania.

The exhibition explores a selection of the most outstanding examples of Romanian embroidery heritage, selected by Florica Zaharia, in a unique dialogue with Rodica-Ioana Ghilea’s creations inspired by these artifacts. Focusing on the theme of nature and the organic, the exhibition selection demonstrates the power of the transcendence of textile and decorative arts, through the harmonious combination of various materials and mediums of artistic expression used by the two protagonists.


Exhibition Opening at RCI's Brâncuși Gallery: Friday, March 31, 2023, 6-9 pm

Art Talk: "About fibers and textile art", 6-7 pm

The exhibition runs through April 21, 2023

Rodica-Ioana Ghilea (b. 1956) graduated from the "Nicolae Grigorescu" Fine Arts Institute, Bucharest, at Professor Eugen Popa's class, Graphic Department, in 1982. Since 1989 she has been a member of the Union of Visual Artists in Romania and has participated in numerous group and personal exhibitions. Between 1996-2016  she worked as a designer for prestigious Romanian institutions, like the Palace of Parliament, the Chamber of Deputies, and the Constitutional Court; she also curated a series of art exhibitions for the "Constantin Brancusi" Exhibition Hall at the Palace of Parliament. Rodica-Ioana Ghilea relates to her own creations with great care, practicing an "alchemical process" in order to transform, redirect and sublimate the rough matter.

Dr. Florica Zaharia is a Conservator Emerita of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Director and Co-owner of the Muzeul Textilelor in Băița and Hărțăgani, western Romania. For twenty-eight years, Florica Zaharia was a member of the Department of Textile Conservation at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met), and for thirteen years Conservator in Charge of the Department, working with a group of world-renowned textile conservators. After her retirement from The Met in 2016, she returned to her native country, Romania, and opened the Muzeul Textilelor. This is a private textile museum with a collection of approximately 12,000 pieces collected in Romania and worldwide by her and her family during the last four decades. Dr. Zaharia has researched, published, lectured, curated exhibitions, and taught on the subjects of textile conservation and preservation, textile materials and technology, and Eastern European textiles.

The Muzeul Textilelor is a private museum founded in 2017, in Băița and Hărțăgani, Romania, by Florica, Ana, and Romulus Zaharia family and is the first textile museum opened in Romania. The Collection includes textiles and tools used in traditional textile production worldwide throughout history; a rich reference collection of fibers, dyes, and textile structures; and a textile-related library. The collection, formed over four decades, includes approximately 12,000 pieces and textile instruments and encompasses flat textiles, costumes, accessories, and tools from Romania, Eastern and Central Europe, Western Europe, the Near East, India, Central Asia, Japan, China, Southeast Asia, Africa, Oceania, and the Americas. The museum has three locations and its mission includes the preservation, collection, research, and sharing of the collection and other resources with specialists and the general public.

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