Have you ever thought about submerging a gothic, Victorian-era dress in the Dead Sea for, oh, several months and checking on it periodically, just because? Maybe when it's finally one giant, beautiful mess of crystallised salt, you consider taking it out and putting it on display in a museum? No? God, what are you doing with your life? All jokes aside, what a brilliant idea by artist Sigalit Landau, whose efforts have since gone viral and produced an exhibition we can't stop staring at.
The dress itself (which will haunt you for days) is a replica of the traditional Hasidic garment worn by the character Leah in the Yiddish play The Dybbuk. Written between 1913 and 1916, it tells the story of a young bride's possession by an evil spirit and her subsequent exorcism.
"Over time, the sea’s alchemy transforms the plain garment from a symbol associated with death and madness into the wedding dress it was always intended to be," the official press release reads. Landau's work involves other salt crystallisation pieces, too, which you can see on her website.
"Over the years, I learned more and more about this low and strange place," Landau says. "Still. the magic is there waiting for us: new experiments, ideas, and understandings. It is like meeting with a different time system, a different logic, another planet. It looks like snow, like sugar, like death’s embrace; solid tears, like a white surrender to fire and water combined." That's some pretty deep stuff (pun intended).