[PhotoSparks] Redefine, reinterpret, recycle: art and design in Essaouira


PhotoSparks is a weekly feature from YourStory, with photographs that celebrate the spirit of creativity and innovation. In this photo essay, we feature some of the mixed-media art works in the Atlantic coastal town of Essaouira in Morocco.

In the earlier 105 posts, we brought you a wide range of creative photographs from an art fair, world music festival, painting fair, telecom expo, art museum, mobile showcase, math museum, social hackathon, bookstore, co-working space, sensorium, international design week, flower show, outdoor ads, startup roadshow, computer museum, startup T-shirts, business cards, art therapy, startup festival, Diwali rangoli, Vesak, jazz festival, modern art gallery, ecopreneurs, painter-poets, health activists, eNGOs and digital innovators.

My travels this month brought me to magical Morocco for panel discussions and keynotes at two events, Africa4Tech 2016 and the ‘COP22’ Climate Change Summit in Marrakech. In this photo essay, we feature the work of artists and designers in Essaouira, a three-hour drive from Marrakech.

Its Medina or ancient walled city is a splendid mix of port, fort, and a maze of alleys dotted with art studios and galleries. There are also windmills and windsurfers along the scenic crescent beach. The art and design are a blend of tradition and modernity, with influences ranging from Berbers to Parisians. The city is also host to the annual Gnawa Festival of World Music.

Centuries of African, Arabic, Berber and European cultural influences have literally washed up on the shores of Essaouria. They are reflected in the works of the artists featured in this photo showcase: Mostafa Dahhaoui, Slimane Drissi, Mohammed Bouafia, Houssni Abdallah, Idris Mahnia, Latif Bougazzoul, and Didier Spindler.

Creativity for artists and entrepreneurs often involves a mix of reinterpretation, redefinition and upcycling. So how are you creating new blends in your works and products?

Got a creative photograph to share? Email us at PhotoSparks@YourStory.com!

See also the YourStory pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups,’ accessible as apps for Apple and Android devices.


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