Portrait of the Artist as a Young Souiri no 1

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Souiri no 1

Filali Mostafa paints in a small studio in Jotiya, close to the surging waves of the Atlantic ocean.  Sourounded by the detritis of a flea market,  his paintings of ordered simplicity and detail could not be further away from the unmitigated chaos of the landscape outside of his door.

It is easy to mistake simplicity for lack of content.  Filali’s work consistently portrays important themes within Moroccan culture;  berber design,  jewish symbolism, the marriage ceremony,  and superstitions which he believes he remains a victim of.

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I Will Leave Buildings But Not People : Revolution in Essaouira

I Will Leave Buildings But Not People : Revolution in Essaouira

Downtown Mogadishu,  circa 1991,  amidst scenes depicting what appears to be the Somali Civil War,  has temporarily been relocated to Essaouira.  It is the location for a movie being made,  so I am advised,  by a South Korean film company.

By the large murals on the sides of houses the movie appears to be about the rule of Somalian dictator Siad Barre who came to power in 1969 following a coup.  Subsequent to introducing radical change and instigating human rights abuses he was removed from power in the 1991 Civil War and died in exile in 1995.

It is ironic though that a south Korean film company is producing the film when Barre had such strong links with the north Korean government,  sharing the ideals of a ‘one party Marxist-Lenninist state’.

More of his life can be read here and here

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Asilah Arts Festival

Asilah Arts Festival

Like most towns in Morocco, Asilah has a walled medina. However in Asilah, the walls are painted with colorful, elaborate murals. For the last thirty two years, the Asilah Arts Festival has rehabilitated and promoted the city of Asilah by fostering artists from around the world.

For the first two weeks in August, the town explodes with culture while it hosts the Arts Festival. Artists use the festival as a way to exhibit their work for the public and exchange ideas with other creative individuals. Every year a group of painters collaborate and design a wall mural at the Medina. Visitors are invited to watch the work as it progresses.

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Art in the Streets of Essaouira

Art in the Streets of Essaouira

These are photographs taken on my perambulations around Essaouira in between projects I had set myself. This was the end of my trip and I was feeling quite jaded, so there are not as many images as I would have liked. The colours of Essaouira are quite beautiful so I am sure I will return and enjoy myself further.  I briefly explain where in the city these were taken and any other brief relevant information.

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