The Dead Sea, known to reel tourists in, has recently received great attention for playing an important role in an artistic project. Israeli artist, Sigalit Landau, had submerged an early twentieth-century black gown into the Dead Sea in 2014.

Assisted by the photographer Yotam From, the dress’ fascinating transformation was recorded showing a difference between its once black color to a crystallized white; coining the name of the project “Salt Bride”. The dress Landau used is a replica of the costume worn by the female character Leah in the Yiddish play “The Dybbuk” of a young bride exorcised following her possession by the evil spirit of her betrothed who died before they could marry.

Artist submerges death robe at the Dead Sea
“Studio Landau lifting ‘Small Salt Bride’ from the waters of the Dead Sea.” Image credit: Matanya Tausig/@marlborough_contempory

According to a statement given at a press conference by London’s Marlborough Contemporary, where a series of large, colored prints of the dress is on display, the salt crystallization of the garment shows its transformation from funeral attire to the glowing white wedding dress it had become.

Landau turns to the Dead Sea for inspiration for her work, as she is amazed by salt crystallization. According to Livescience, the artist stated referred to the sea as a different planet, an alternate logic and time system.

Artist submerges death robe at the Dead Sea
The garment is trending on social media. Image credit: @marlborough_contempory

“It looks like snow, like sugar, like death’s embrace; solid tears, like a white surrender to fire and water combined,” Landau added.

Other creative projects by the artist include salt crystal encrusted lamps, hangman’s noose and the crystalline island of shoes.

Like crystals in the Dead Sea

This body of water is among the saltiest on the planet with 34% salinity, it is even saltier than the open ocean. According to scientists, it is getting saltier by the year due to water levels dropping by 1.5 meters per annum due to evaporation. In fact, the sea is far denser than normal water that it allows people to float.

According to an article published in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters in 2012, the mystery behind the sparkly dress is that salt tends to crystallize in very salty solutions where it seeds at areas that have a saltier concentration than the surrounding water.

Artist submerges death robe at the Dead Sea
Landau has shared her interest in constructing a salt bridge across the Dead Sea connecting Israel and Jordan. Image credit: @marlborough_contempory

Initially, the salt crystal would still contain an ample amount of water but as more salt is deposited, expanding the crystal, water is then diffused. Landau’s artistic journey with the Dead Sea is one that can be perceived as a shining example of the mysteries, awe, and utter beauty nature produces on a daily basis.

Basically drowning a dress that was used to portray death in a 1920’s play only for it to be transformed into a sparkling wedding dress that would even make Cinderella jealous is amazing. It is almost like a rebirth; a second chance at new beginnings of which the character of the play was robbed.

Artist submerges death robe at the Dead Sea
“The dress featured in Sigalit Landau’s ‘Salt Bride’ is a replica of a traditional Hasidic garment worn by the female character #Leah in the canonical Yiddish play #TheDybbuk,” said Marlborough Contemporary. Image credit: @marlborough_contempory

Source: The New York Times