Casas blancas cielos azules
Casablanca, A North African city, built by the French with a Spanish name. Once the dream of empire it is now the financial capital of Morocco spearheading the dream of modernisation and development. The tension between the drive towards modernity and the desire to hold on to tradition is strongly felt there.
White buildings photographed against clear blue skies represent the aspirations of the city. Everything is beautiful in Casablanca, as long as you are looking up…
Fragments of buildings are taken, mirrored and repeated using the same principles applied in traditional Islamic design. This process abstracts the buildings from their original form. Seen from afar they have been transformed into motifs or emblems. But, if you zoom in you can see mundane, everyday objects; windows, air conditioners, streetlights, that have been manipulated by the use of repetition and symmetry to create these idealised versions.
The motifs float in front of blueprint reproductions of pencil-line drawings of traditional Islamic patterns. The patterns form a kind of grid structure that holds the buildings in place. The use of cyanotype with its past application as a means of reproducing architectural plans, suggests something of the way traditions inform current and future developments and aesthetics.