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Emine Erdoğan showcases Anatolian textiles to fellow first ladies



First lady Emine Erdoğan showcased the rich and time-honored traditions of Anatolian textiles in a captivating exhibition held at the Turkish House (Türkevi) in New York.

The exhibition, known as the “Atlas of Turkish Weaving,” was a highlight of her visit to the annual U.N. General Assembly meetings, where she had the distinct honor of hosting several first ladies.

Addressing her esteemed guests, Erdoğan expressed the significance of preserving and sharing Anatolia’s unique cultural treasures with the global community. She proudly shared that the world’s oldest known weaving, dating back an astonishing 9,000 years, was discovered in Anatolia. Notably, the oldest weaving artifacts were unearthed during excavations at the renowned site of Çatalhöyük. The first lady highlighted that the artistry, once woven on looms in Anatolian homes, continues to inspire and captivate audiences through Renaissance paintings displayed in museums worldwide.

Throughout the exhibition, Erdoğan personally introduced handmade textile products, providing insights into the exquisite craftsmanship. She emphasized that some of the “rarest examples” of kemha weaving, referred to as brocade in Western cultures, were woven in regions now known as Bursa and Amasra. She underscored the historical significance of Ottoman-era fabric brokers, who meticulously sought out quality fabrics with specific colors and patterns, noting that Istanbul was home to the world’s earliest consumer protection laws.

“Our fabrics, woven from linen, silk, wool and cotton threads, colored with natural dyes, hold value not only for their durability but also for their health benefits,” Erdoğan emphasized. She contrasted these enduring textiles with industrial fabrics that cater to contemporary society, highlighting that they no longer prioritize durability.

The first lady took pride in Türkiye’s historical expertise in crafting waterproof bristle tents “thousands of years before the invention of nanotechnology,” without relying on synthetic materials. She also noted that Turkish textile masters are registered in the UNESCO Convention for the Protection of Intangible Cultural Heritage as “Living Human Treasures.”


The exhibition drew the attention and admiration of the wives of leaders from various countries, including Kenya, Serbia, Albania, Croatia and North Macedonia. They lauded the Turkish textile industry and expressed gratitude to Emine Erdoğan for her contributions to the “Atlas of Turkish Weaving.”

The event also saw the presence of distinguished Turkish officials, including Family and Social Services Minister Mahinur Ozdemir Goktas, Industry and Technology Minister Fatih Kacır and Trade Minister Ömer Bolat.


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Source: Daily Sabah

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