This earliest work in the trilogy, the Maimonides Garment, recalls the image of Maimonides who is considered one of the most important figures in Judaism. Because he wrote his principles in Arabic, he was also recognized as a philosopher and a physician in Islamic culture.
The common legend is that Saladin fell ill during his reign over Jerusalem and none of his man could cure him. The famous Egyptian doctor, Maimonides, was summoned to the sultan’s palace and healed him of his malady. As a gift for his services he received a magnificent jalabiya and a 1000 dinar note, and the two men developed a deep friendship.
The refabricated outfit of Maimonides is displayed in a glass vitrine, on a mannequin, whose face has been sculpted to match the portrait. The work is exhibited didactically, similar to displays in history museums or wax museums, which preserves the typical ethnographic manner of representation of the East. Fabrics are a common representation of the East in ethnographic exhibitions, for example, in the Ethnographic Department on the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.
The project Maimonides Garment heightens the viewers’ wariness, prompting them to ask themselves, is it an authentic or false representation? The piece casts a doubt about the historical document: suspicions arise that the bill is a counterfeit, monopoly money, an invented artistic narrative and not a historical fact.