to the painting to read title and artist
painting and sculpture have evolved from contemporary artists'
confrontation with their country's vast and vital artistic
heritage. The traditional arts are strongly present in every
aspect of Moroccan life, from architecture to everyday objects.
faced with these symbolic forms that are so closely bound up with
collective imagery, responded by re-evaluating this heritage and
incorporating an unmistakably contemporary aesthetic ideal.
Cherkaoui, through his study of Arabic calligraphy and the Berber
symbols used to decorate both traditional objects and the human
body, has succeeded in containing both sign and meaning within a
single, intense vibration..
Melehi, Belkahia and Chebaa, who taught painting at the Ecole des
Beaux-Arts in Casablanca (1968-1971), are among the most active
members of Morocco's artistic community, and play an important
role in the on-going task of building a national culture. They
were the organizers, in 1969, of the "exposition-Manifeste"
in Marrakech's Djamaa El Fna Square.
the development of pictorial expression is moving towards the
diversification of expression based on individual perceptions and
the exploration of artistic possibilities. Belkahia's use of local
materials is a good example of this. He paints on leather instead
of canvas, using natural pigments which accentuate the sensuality
of his shapes and graphic figures. The studied, deliberate
brushstrokes of Sufist-inspired painter Rabi seem rooted in the
spirit of calligraphy.
young artists have achieved international recognition. One of the
best known is Kacimi, whose signs and figures painted on huge
canvases look as though they are about to take flight. Bellamine,
another young artist, creates density and mystery with layer on
layer of color, infused with a joyful transparency that reflects
his love of painting.
Morocco Today has chosen to present today Ouassou Mohammed, a
self-educated artist who lives in the Moroccan city known for its
Zemmouri Berber carpets, the city of Khemisset. The city is also
known for its handicraft items. Ouassou has organized exhibitions
all over Morocco and also in Germany.
of the most important characteristics of Ouassou paintings is that
we can feel Zemmour colorful environment in its paintings. For
those familiar with Morocco in general, and Zemmour region and
Khemisset in particular, the colorful of artisan products and the
wonderful color of the region landscape and its moderate weather
are visible in Ouassou work as they are reflected in his