Collective Museum of Casablanca /‘Madrassa', primary school Ibnou Abbad demolished in June 2015, Thinkart, Casablanca, Mohamed Fariji

L’Atelier de l’Observatoire Exhibition Opens 1 November

Collective is delighted to present The Collective Museum: Citizen project for a museum of collective memory, a new exhibition from L’Atelier de l’Observatoire, opening at Collective Friday 1 November, 7—9pm.

Casablanca-based contemporary art organisation L’Atelier de l’Observatoire design, produce and disseminate projects which support Moroccan contemporary creativity, nationally and internationally.

The Collective Museum consists of a series of acts of recovery and collection of documents, photographs, objects, films, and memories from places, predominantly in Casablanca, facing demolition, dereliction or reappropriation. These include domestic, family spaces and abandoned or former public spaces.

This project builds on the artist and co-founder of Atelier de l’Observatoire Mohamed Fariji’s previous project, The Imaginary Aquarium, which attempted to reactivate the former Casablanca aquarium. Fariji worked with participants to create a collective memory of site through the process of gathering, salvaging and researching. This approach, developed in The Collective Museum, offers an alternative way of writing history, with a focus on individual and group stories.

Since Collective moved to Calton Hill in 2013 they have worked with artists to question what a City Observatory can be and how we can explore the hidden narratives of our new home on the City Observatory site. The Collective Museum project offers an alternative framework to scrutinize precarious public and domestic urban space through story, observation, memory and objects.

During the opening weekend there will be a discussion event considering how to document the past and imagining possible futures of urban spaces that are under the threat of demolition, or are in the process of development.

L’Atelier de l’Observatoire is a space for art and research developing participative and socially engaged projects involving artists, researchers and the general public. The organisation experiments with alternative approaches through different programs and formats such as talks, researches, workshops, exhibitions, trainings, film restorations, artworks productions and publications.