Sunday, 23 May 2010

Exhibit: Stitching for Peace and Justice

Opening Reception: Thursday, June 3, 7:00 to 9:00 pm
with Talk by Sima Elizabeth Shefrin
Exhibit until Wednesday, June 23

Co-sponsored with United Jewish People's Order
and Trinity St. Paul’s United Church - Middle East Working Group

For more than thirty years, Sima Elizabeth Shefrin, has made quilts about real people and their struggles and celebrations. She aims to create art work that is honest, hopeful and beautiful.

The exhibit brings together a range of projects and workshop facilitated by Sima centred around Palestine and Israel. The most recent is a series of three workshops held in spring 2007 in which children and women created fabric self-portraits along with messages they wished to send to their North American counterparts.

The first workshop in a grade 4 class in the Hand in Hand School in Jerusalem, one of the very few mixed Jewish/Arab schools in Israel. The children answered questions about their favourite foods and holidays and their wishes for the future. The result is a single large quilt.

The second workshop was held at the Palestine Centre for Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation. Young people created self portraits and wrote messages they wished to pass on to young people of Canada. There are a total of 12 pieces.

The third was organized by Tent of Nations, a Palestinian project which brings together youth of various cultures to build bridges of understanding, reconciliation and peace. It took place at the Bent Al-reef Empowerment Project which helps village women realize their full potential through education, work with families, health, feminism and creativity. There are 11 pieces.

Sima, facilitated the Middle East Peace Quilt, an international community art project made by about 300 people from all over the world. They were asked to create a quilt square in response to the question "What is your vision of peace in the Middle East?"

The Peace Quilt (actually 31 separate panels) has tour North America since 1999 and exhibited in churches, synagogues, community centres, civic buildings, private foundations, political organizations, summer camps, and fairs, as well as at university campuses, art galleries, and the National Archives of Canada.

Sima Elizabeth Shefrin is an artist and quilter who has been researching and practicing political stitchery for over 25 years. In 1999 she was the artist-coordinator of the Middle East Peace Quilt which has toured all over North America. She has worked for 18 years teaching and participating in peer counseling and listening projects. She is a member of the Palestinian/Jewish women for peace dialogue group.

Co-sponsor websites: and

Space is limited, to register online please visit our reservations page

Need to know:
- Admission is free (donations gratefully accepted)
- Doors open at 6:45 pm
- Sorry, not wheelchair accessible

Tasty refreshments (non-alcoholic) and oliveoil+za'atar dipping.

Beit Zatoun is a non-profit art & culture venue providing a platform for the social justice & human rights communities in Toronto & beyond.

612 Markham Street (right by Bathurst subway)

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