Wednesday, March 21, 2012

MARRAKECH - The geometrical pattern of Zellige tiles & Plaster work

We are currently in Marrakech Morocco organising the events for a conference here in 2013. I love the passion that exists in this city - the way its African heart beats with intricate artisan detail at every turn, the handcrafted work, the geometric moorish influence in the symmetrical mathematical pattern detail and the intensity of colour and light. It is a designers paradise with such wonderful inspiration.

Here are a few photos I have taken in the past 24hrs of the geometrical pattern in everyday surfaces - from the floor of a former palace, to the pillar of a building along our busy street - all of these mosaic tiles, also known as "zellige", are individually made and separately inserted into the surface they sit upon. This beautiful artisanal craftsmanship is evident all over this city and I find myself continually stopping to admire the work that has gone into achieving it. It is also sometimes a stark contrast to the dusty, hot (and its only the beginning of Spring) street/market one finds these details, and the surprise in finding such amazing craftsmanship in  often everyday areas, is part of the reason I find Marrakech so fascinating.

I also love the detailed hand crafted plaster work that exists in so many buildings. Some are purely pattern, others are Arabic words carved into the plaster. The hours that have gone into achieving these surfaces is amazing and the result, quite memorising.