Marrakech’s arts scene is heating up

Following the success of the Marrakech Biennale earlier this year, the art scene seems to be heating up. Hardly a week goes by without receiving an invitation to the vernissage of the latest exhibit opening up in Marrakech.

Yet it seems to be a trend throughout the Kingdom. In Rabat, the Mohamed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art opened in October  and currently on exhibit is 100 Years of Creation.  Just one month after opening its doors, the museum announced on its Facebook page that over 30,000 visitors had passed through its doors.  After all, it is the first museum in Morocco dedicated entirely to contemporary and modern art.

I’m most excited about the next exhibit scheduled to open on 2 March 2015 and will be planning a visit to the capital.  According to Morocco World News the museum will host the Medieval Morocco: An Empire from Africa to Spain from 2 March to 1 June 2015 currently on display at the Louvre in Paris which ends on 19 January 2015.  That’s the kind of exhibit I would travel to Paris to see, but if this is indeed true I’ll just need to jump on a train to Rabat!

The Marrakech Museum for Photography and Visual Arts, designed by leading architect Sir David Chipperfield, is scheduled to open in 2016 and is set to be the world’s largest photography museum. Until then, the museum is temporarily housed inside the Badii Palace, a ruined palace built during the Saadian empire.

In the meantime, Marrakech is home to more than 10 art galleries with new exhibits opening on a regular basis. I’ve seen a few of the shows on view around town at the moment and I highly recommend the following:
David Bloch Gallery

David Bloch gallery, Copyright Mandy Sinclair
David Bloch gallery, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

One of the trendiest galleries in town with the hippest vernissages, David Bloch Gallery is showing Alexone Dizac’s Banana Spleen exhibit on now until the end of the month. The works feature Dizac’s signature cartoon-like character in a bold and colourful street-art style.  But head over soon as the exhibit is only on display until the end of the month, at which time the exhibit and decor will change as the space was completely redecorated – floor tiles, wall colour and even graffiti on an exterior wall – for the exhibit.

If you miss this show, be sure to check out R E M E D’s return on 19 December 2014 until 18 January 2015.

Address: Rue des Vieux Marrakechis

Head on over to Kechmara for lunch after a day of gallery-hopping and shopping in Gueliz to admire the exhibit of vintage cinema and travel posters currently adorning the walls of this trendy eatery. Or pop by on a Wednesday night at DJ Mademoiselle Saourra plays deep on the turntables, creating a funky ambiance in the trendiest place to be mid-week.

Address: 3 Rue de la Liberte, Gueliz, Marrakech

Marrakech Museum of Photography and Visual Arts

Badii Palace, Marrakech, Copyright Mandy Sinclair
Badii Palace, Marrakech, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

Combine a visit to the Badii Palace with a stop at the temporary home of the Museum of Photography and Visual Arts. American photographer Eve Arnold’s portraits of some of the world’s leading public figures are on display until 31 December.

Address: Badii Palace, near Place des Ferblantiers in the medina

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