Thursday, April 15, 2010

Art Installation at Fes Medina riad

The ALIF riad in Batha is to host a unique sculptural exhibition, opening at 18h30 on Saturday 17 April.

Artists M'barek Bouhchichi and Eric Saline ponder the riad space

Entitled Architectural Responses, the exhibition features the work of Moroccan artist M'barek Bouhchichi and American artist Eric Saline. Jess Stephens, organising the exhibition on behalf of ALIF (the Arabic Language Institute in Fez) and the American Language centre, explains that the two artists eagerly accepted the challenge to create this sculptural installation, and calls it 'Fez' freshest art exhibition in 1200 years'.

While one might think that the specific architectural and decorative aspects of a traditional Moroccan riad is hardly a neutral starting point, the two artists feel that the space of a riad is like a forgotten work of art, a pre-mixed palette just begging to have life breathed back into it.

The idea began a couple of years ago when M'barek and Eric met in Tetouan and discussed the similarities in their work. For this installation, they'll be using everyday materials from the souks like paper, plastic sheeting and indoor/outdoor lights. They invite the public to participate in a living artwork - walk around, look at the work from different angles, interact with it, explore and touch it, and get a sense of the artwork.

Courtyard of the ALIF riad in Batha

Cultural Events at the riad
The riad was recently acquired by ALIF/ALC and Jess co-ordinates a wide range of cultural events. There's no charge, except for the Moroccan Arabic conversation clases which are Dh750 for six lessons, and everyone's invited. Here's the programme for the rest of April:

18h30 Thursday 15 April

Film screening : What a Wonderful World
(Moroccan Arabic with English Subtitles)

18h30 Saturday 17 April until 12 of May
Exhibition opening: Architectural Responses: Eric Saline & M'Barek Bouhchichi

19h00 Sunday 18 April
Poetry Soiree

18h30 Tuesday 20 April
Moroccan Arabic Conversation Course: Beginners

18h30 Wednesday 21 April
Moroccan Arabic Conversation Course 2/6: Intermediate

18h30 Thursday 22 April
Film Night: The Dove's Lost Necklace
(Moroccan Arabic with English Subtitles)

18h30 Monday 26 April
Percussion workshop and Malhoun Concert.

18h30 Tuesday 27 April
Moroccan Arabic Conversation Course 3/6: Beginners

18h30 Wednesday 28th April
Moroccan Arabic Conversation Course 3/6: Intermediate

The riad can be found at 6 Derb Drissi, Douh, Batha. For more information, phone Jess on +212 (0) 645 223 203.

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