Capturing Chaos—2018 Morocco

Visiting Morocco through Green Olive Arts has been like finding a new universe that is both vibrant and serene, unfamiliar yet hospitable. Though typically it takes time for me to absorb and reflect new stimuli in my work, I came to Tétouan with a few images and themes in mind. I see The Medinaas a container of light, a benign chaos that parallels the often chaotic jumble of my thoughts and senses. Buildings in the US have more windows and glass surfaces than in Tétouan. Light and sound reflected from these surfaces can seem harsh and confusing compared to the gentle luminosity of the hilltop Medina. 

The Medina appears as a visual cacophony made up of a multitude of whites and constantly changing shapes. Rather than producing literal and accurate depictions through painting, the collages I’ve made are lighthearted interpretations aiming to capture the fleeting sense of luminous, architectonic vitality. Using fragments of paint chips has been a fun and challenging exercise — like a puzzle or a game with a continually evolving set of rules.

The figures I’ve represented here connect to much of the work I’ve done in the past, showing a figure or two in a domestic environment. Using the literary character of Scheherazade as a starting point, and with the aid of local Moroccan women as models, I’ve begun a series of images depicting seemingly intimate views into private interior spaces. The recurring shapes of windows and doors remind us of the exterior and public world lying just steps away and contrasting in light, noise, and activity.

The supportive and homelike environment provided by GOA is what has made this unforgettable creative cycle possible for me.

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