Thursday, September 15, 2016

Fez Mourns the Passing of A Master Craftsman

"So sad. The last woodworker passed way ... and so the whole legacy .... Master Mohammed Belmajdoub. Rest in Peace"  - Hamza El Fasiki

Sidi Mohammed Belmajdoub has passed away. For the last few decades he was producing beautiful objects from cedar, thuja, lemon wood and rosewood. From exquisite chess sets to spinning-tops, from small boxes to large spinning-wheels, Si Mohammed produced them all and he did so by hand and foot.

The first thing visitors noticed when approaching his small workshop on the Talaa K'bira was the smell of cedar. The next thing that struck you was the lack of noise. His hand-turned lathe was absolutely silent as he fixed the piece of wood he was working on onto the lathe and then, guiding his chisel, with his foot he rapidly produced the finished object.

Si Mohammed's products were sort after, not just by the passing tourists, but by local Moroccans, who said his work was some of the finest in the Medina.

Si Mohammed had six grown children who all have children of their own. Sadly, none of his children followed his love of woodcarving as a vocation. Most of his children emigrated to France some years ago. He was always understanding about their choices, pointing out that what he did was now easily replicated by machines. However, we beg to differ. His work was unique.

See our  2011 portrait of Si Mohammed here

Rest in Peace Sidi Mohammed Belmajdoub


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