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Myriam Sahraoui
Role
Advisor - Morocco
Email
m.sahraoui [at] dutchculture.nl
 

Dutch-Moroccan collaboration 'One Square Meter Berber' on view in the Netherlands

Dutch-Moroccan collaboration 'One Square Meter Berber' on view in the Netherlands

The 'One Square Meter Berber' project by Mina Abouzahra that was planned for 2020, will be exhibited in Amsterdam from 16 to 26 September 2021.

One Square Meter Berber by Dutch-Moroccan designer Mina Abouzahra is a cultural and social project that uses design as a powerful force for good. The programme aims to protect, preserve, and sustain the ancient cultural heritage of the Amazigh weaving community of Morocco and to empower women - socially and economically - through craft. Last year, One Square Meter Berber was shown at the Contemporary African Art Fair in Marrakech before being cancelled due to COVID-19. From 16 until 26 September 2021 the project will be on view at 'Het Meterhuisje' during design festival GLUE in Amsterdam. You can also join live events on 17 and 23 September, more information below.

One Square Meter Berber is supported by the Creative Industries Fund NL.

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Zahra Taklit Age (Cooperative Founder), Tichfa Boulali and Hlima Boukousane, participants of the project 'One Square Meter Berber' by Mina Abouzahra, 2020. Photo: Cooperative Carpets of Marmoucha
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Zahra Taklit Age (Cooperative Founder), Tichfa Boulali and Hlima Boukousane, participants of the project 'One Square Meter Berber' by Mina Abouzahra, 2020. Photo: Cooperative Carpets of Marmoucha

One Square Meter Berber matched four different cooperatives in rural Morocco with accomplished international artists from the Netherlands; Amie Dicke, Mattijs Van Bergen, Wieki Somers and Bertjan Pot. The first result of this collaboration are four self-portraits in the form of a 'one square meter Berber' produced during a trip to Morocco as a dialogue between the weavers and designers. The crafts women shared their knowledge and technique, while the designers pushed the conceptual boundaries of the production method; distilling modern narratives and bringing the craft to the 21st century.

Preserving heritage globally while supporting lives locally

A special bond was created and back in the Netherlands the designers worked on their own pieces as a tribute to the weavers and their traditional techniques. Under the designers’ creative direction, the craft takes on an increased sense of cultural awareness and modernity, recognising the importance of heritage as a way to inform the future.

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Rahma Ifakkiren and Naima Ouagga of Cooperative: Tefaout n’takdift in the city of Taznakht, Morocco, participants of the project 'One Square Meter Berber' by Mina Abouzahra, 2020.
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Rahma Ifakkiren and Naima Ouagga of Cooperative: Tefaout n’takdift in the city of Taznakht, Morocco, participants of the project 'One Square Meter Berber' by Mina Abouzahra, 2020.
When and where to see 'One Square Meter Berber'?

February 2020: exhibition at Palais Bahia in Marrakech, during the Contemporary African Art Fair 1-54 (cancelled)

16 – 26 September 2021: exhibition 'Het Berberhuis' at 'Het Meterhuisje', Westergas, Amsterdam

17 September 2021: event 'Meet the Makers' with Mattijs van Bergen, Amie Dicke, Bertjan Pot and Mina Abouzahra about the collaboration between Dutch designers and female weavers from Morocco. DutchCulture's Morocco advisor Myriam Sahraoui will moderate this session. Location: 'Het Berberhuis'. Free attendance, registration required.

23 September 2021: event 'DESIGN YOUR FUTURE' with Mina Abouzahra, Amanda Pinatih (design curator Stedelijk Museum) and Inge Schmitt (Trend & Forecast Manager of de Bijenkorf), who will discuss themes such as career choice, trends, art and more. Location: 'Het Berberhuis'. Free attendance, registration required.

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'One Square Meter Berber' 1 m2 poster.

You can purchase One Square Meter Berber - The Paper, a paper of 1 m2 full of information about the rug industry, personal stories of the female weavers and much more here.

Check out the complete overview of Dutch cultural activities in Morocco in our database. If you are a cultural professional who wants to go to Morocco, feel free to contact our Morocco advisor Myriam Sahraoui.