Modernism in Marrakech

Palais Namaskar, luxury hotel, Marrakech

symbioses of two worlds, Marrakesh

Palais Namaskar, one of Marrakech’s more opulent five-star hotels, is not the first place you might think of when considering modern art, however this month sees the hotel host a fascinating exhibition to mark the centenary of a journey to North Africa made by Paul Klee, August Macke and Louis Moilliet.

The adventure that these three seminal artists undertook to North Africa (primarily to Tunis) not only shaped their own work but also Modernism in the west on the whole. It is well documented that for many Europeans, North Africa was a source of inspiration. Claude Monet and Auguste Renoir visited Algeria, and Henri Matisse of course lived in Morocco for some time (1912-1913), where he painted some of his famous ‘orientalist’ style works.

It was during Klee’s journey to Tunis that he explored abstract and Modernist ideas and returned with the motto: “Art does not reproduce the visible; rather, it makes visible.”

Partnering with the Written Art Foundation, a German cultural institution, the exhibition Symbiosis of Two Worlds brings together 40 important American, European and Arabic artists which highlight the ongoing connections between European and North African artists. Among them are Gerhard Richter, Cy Twombly, Georg Baselitz, Shafic Abboud, Mehdi Qotbi, Rachid Koraichi, Nja Mahdaoui and El Houssaine Mimouni. The exhibition runs from November 9 to December 8.

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