“Family is intrinsic to my creativity,” says Ismail Zaidy about his photographic practice that’s grounded in color, emotion, and various aspects of Moroccan culture. In many of his conceptual images, Zaidy’s brother and sister serve as models positioned among swathes of pastel fabrics or balancing between taught ropes. Shot against the sandy backdrops of windswept deserts, each photograph amplifies movement and an interplay between light and shadow.
Pairing with the abstract and minimal aesthetic, Zaidy uses simple editing tools and only the camera on a Samsung Galaxy S5. He draws on his passion for color through silks, cotton, and other textiles that evoke the imagery of his upbringing. “When I was a kid, I used to live in a modest area in Marrakech where I was watching the way the women would wear their fabrics, hike and djellaba out on the streets. These women are still a huge inspiration for me today,” he says.
Although the involvement of Zaidy’s siblings began out of necessity when others weren’t available, they continue to offer direction and insight into the concepts, which the 23-year-old photographer explains:
I’m trying to shine a light on certain subjects. A lack of communication, distance between siblings and their parents, and family estrangement are problems that affect many but are rarely talked about. I am trying to treat this issue throughout my work in a poetic way, showing that family is one of the most valuable gifts in our lives.
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After covering a church turned skatepark in Spain with his signature style of murals, Okuda San Miguel (previously) has now transformed an abandoned Moroccan church into a 360-degree mural titled “11 Mirages to Freedom.” The street artist covered the structure in geometric bears, birds, and human faces, produced as a part of the British Council‘s Street Art Caravane Initiative. Working with the architecture already in place, San Miguel painted each of the building’s eleven faces while incorporating the structure’s barred windows. These he formed into bird cages, hats, and masks that are seamlessly incorporated…as long as you don’t look into the barred openings.
The church is uniformly painted in a brilliant shade of yellow, with smaller architectural details painted in equally vibrant colors. You can see more of San Miguel’s murals in the video Infinite World included below, as well as on the artist’s Instagram. (via Web Urbanist)
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A Mercedes V12 Engine Built with Hand-Forged Components of Bone, Wood, Fossils and 50 Other Materials
This new sculptural piece by artist Eric van Hove might take the cake for labor-intensive automotive art. After receiving a Cda-Projects Grant, the artist headed to Morrocco to create V12 Laraki, an excruciatingly detailed Mercedes V12 engine built from 53 materials that were hand-forged from 35 master craftsmen from various regions in Morocco.
Nine months in the making,V12 Laraki began when van Hove dismantled a mercedes engine and then set about creating faithful reproductions of every single component, some 465 parts and 660 bolts made of casted copper. Contracting with artists around Morocco the engine was made with white cedar wood, high Atlas red cedar wood, walnut wood, lemon wood, orange wood, ebony wood of Macassar, mahogany wood, thuya wood, Moroccan beech wood, pink apricot wood, mother of pearl, yellow copper, nickel plated copper, red copper, forged iron, recycled aluminum, nickel silver, silver, tin, cow bone, goat bone, malachite of Midelt, agate, green onyx, tigers eye, Taroudant stone, sand stone, red marble of Agadir, black marble of Ouarzazate, white marble of Béni Mellal, pink granite of Tafraoute, goatskin, cow-skin, lambskin, resin, cow horn, rams horn, ammonite fossils of the Paleozoic from Erfoud, Ourika clay, geometric terra cotta with vitreous enamel (zellige), green enamel of Tamgrout, paint, cotton, Argan oil, cork, henna, rumex. In case you were interested.
While the engine is of course not meant to be functional, the piece acts as an incredible testament to Moroccan craft, as well as a fascinating amalgam of natural resources and materials found in the region. You can learn more about the project on the artists website and over on Facebook.
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Editor's Picks: History
Highlights below. For the full collection click here.