Hebrew for "Apathetic", ADISH is a Tel-Aviv based brand which seeks to merge the culture of the Middle East with high-end streetwear. ADISH founders Amit Luzon and Eyal Eliyahu's main aim is to use their creations as a medium to change things and mark a turning point in the socio-political dynamics in their region. With the broader mission of multinational collaboration, ADISH launched a line of contemporary silhouettes embellished with hand-sewn Palestinian embroidery. These distinctly Middle Eastern touches are the product of collaboration with a team of talented Palestinian craftswomen, whose heritage and skill have come to define the ADISH aesthetic. In addition to designing clothes which honor Palestinian traditions, culture, and heirlooms, ADISH has empowered a team of over 50 Palestinian embroiderers through employment.
The ADISH AW19 collection, titled "Sea of Sand", draws its inspiration from the Middle East during the late 1800s and early 1900s, a time in which the countries of today did not exist. Once referred to as "Greater Syria" a large part of its inhabitants were Bedouin tribes, which dramatically changed upon the arrival of European colonialists in the region. This season’s collection is inspired by the Bedouin’s traditional garb and British military uniforms, re-imagining their first interactions and exchanges. Combining Eastern and Western style, the composition unfolds into wide pants and dresses with special attention paid to heavy embroidery and classic tailoring.
ADISH presents an alternate story of the beginning of the tensions and conflicts that continue to disrupt the area.
How the somewhat dated movie "Lawrence of Arabia" was the perfect starting point for the design of some startling clothes. The sun is shining mercilessly in the desert of the Arabian Peninsula, the British officer Thomas Edward Lawrence is lying comfortably in the sand, his piercing blue eyes staring at his compass, his Nordic lips whistling a tune. His posture is relaxed, almost a little frivolous, like a seductress waiting for her prey (a perfect example for the sexual ambiguity that is an underlying theme in "Lawrence of Arabia"). Meanwhile his guide drops a bucket into the well. Then there it is. A dark shadow on the horizon, trembling and seemingly floating above the ground which is one of the halogenic tricks that the desert plays with the mind. The shadow gets bigger and closer, though in a nerve wrecking slow mode. When he becomes recognizable the guide runs to his camel, pulls a gun from his saddle but before he can aim, he is shot. Calmly the dark rider investigates the dead guy and explains unapologetically, that this man was not allowed to drink from this well. The stunningly good looking young man is, of course, the Egyptian actor Omar Sharif in the role of his life as Sherif Ali. And there is a little doubt that it is one of hottest introductions of a character ever banned on celluloid. A movie like “Lawrence Of Arabia“ would most likely not be made today because of the intricate knot of sensibilities around colonialism, historical achievement and/or guilt, war crimes, cultural supremacism and of course the question who owns which story and whose right it is to tell is. The fact that this movie was the starting point for the new Adish collection is both confusing and totally coherent. The Tel Aviv based collective, founded by Amit Luzon and Eyal Eliyahu, creates irresistibly charming garments by blurring cultural and political lines, embracing the whole aesthetic melting pot that there home region is.
This time they blend vintage military references with Bedouin embroidery and a special stitch that is normally used for traditional fabrics used for wall-hangings or to cover the floors. There are military shirts in olive and sand, with or without collar. Their shape is functional and they promise much needed physical rigidity. The knitwear is rather rural – as if it was done with a slightly too thick pair of needles – and the combination with a blue-and-white striped shirt seems random in precisely the way where randomness becomes perfect. The highlight in terms of concept and weirdness is a long black coat: the upper half resembles a traditional raincoat, the sleeves and bottom are decorated with traditional blue Palestinian patterns. It is Adish’s least street inspired and most tailored offering so far, and even the hoodies are enriched with beautiful tassels or gathered like a lush curtain. There is a desert wind richness here that is unusual and captivating. The boys in the look book initially felt uncomfortable in these clothes because they are multilayered both in terms of gender and origin. What is a man wearing an army coat with the pattern of a old Palestinian dress found on the Old City Market in Jerusalem? A faggot? A shapeshifter? A traitor? A visionary?