|David Chipperfield design concept|
North Africa’s patchy museum scene is set to be enhanced with a new purpose-built museum dedicated to photography based in Morocco. The Marrakech Museum for Photography and Visual Arts, designed by the leading British architect David Chipperfield, is due to be built near the 12th-century Menara Gardens and is scheduled to open in 2016.
“The museum will focus its collecting across three genres of photography and lens-based media, both static and moving: architecture and design; photojournalism; fashion and culture,” says a press statement. On the issue of funding, a project spokeswoman would only say that the museum would be supported by a number of “private and corporate backers”.
The museum plans to launch a scholarship programme in partnership with the University of Arizona, enabling Moroccan students to take museum studies courses at institutions worldwide.
Meanwhile, museum officials have set up a temporary exhibition space that is due to open next month at the Badii Palace (pictured above) in the centre of Marrakech with a display of ten contemporary Moroccan photographers including Hicham Gardaf and Leila Sadel.
The show is sponsored by the luxury hotel chain Sofitel. An exhibition of works by photographers from the high-profile Magnum agency follows in early November.
Text Gareth Harris.