'1-54' Contemporary African Art Fair kicks off in Marrakech

The city is on display, with galleries and museums open

20 February, 12:30

    RABAT - All eyes will be on Marrakech this weekend for the opening of the 3rd edition of the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair, taking place February 20-23.
    Organised by Mamounia, the fair showcases about 60 African artists and is also a chance for the city's galleries to open, both in the new part as well as within the walls of the Medina.
    Some of the not-to-be-missed events include the exhibition "Muros" by artist Fatiha Zemmouri at the gallery Comptoir Des Mines, where the abstract works are made of fragile materials taken from nature.
    Another important show is artist Ghizlane Sahli's solo exhibition "La Mer(e), Origine du Monde ...." (The Sea, Origin of the World) at the David Bloch gallery, running through March 14.
    The Moroccan artist launched at the first edition of the 1-54 fair, and her work reuses plastic bottles, covering them with silk threads in a traditional Moroccan embroidery technique.
    At the Hotel Movenpick, through March 30, the artists' collective United Artists will showcase the varied voices of contemporary African art with works from its 80 members.
    An all-female project is being featured at the Dar Bellarj in the Medina, opening February 21 and running through December 31, where about a dozen women highlight their memories through the photography of Laila Hida, Noureddine Tilsaghni and Di Hassan Hajjaj, who international critics have recognised as the Andy Warhol of Morocco. The Galerie Dar El Basha will feature a photography exhibit titled "Monade(s)" by self-taught photographer Mustapha Azeroual.
    The Es Saadi hotel is showcasing the artist Franck Kemkeng Noah in an exhibition titled "Cross History", which explores interculturalism and runs through March 16. In Gueliz, Marrakech's modern district, the Siniya 28 gallery is hosting the artists' collective Crossroads, a key member of which is Alia Ali, who mixes the poetry of fabrics with the hardness of photography.
    At the Macaal contemporary African art museum, a Yoko Ono song titled "Have You Seen a Horizon Lately?" was the inspiration for tackling the topic of the environment, with some works by Ono herself on display.
    The colourful graffiti of Mohamed Melehi will cover the walls of the Khalid Art Gallery, while inside there will be some new works by Melehi, considered among the fathers of modern Moroccan art. Finally, the Belgian artist Eric Van Hove will be the focus of an exhibition at the Voice Gallery, with his installations and photography.

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