L’blend Creative Space has hosted the visual arts program Positive Art Force from the 1st to the 11th of December, 2018. A program organized in partnership with Meteor International and supported by the Swedish Institute’s Creative Force Fund.
This should be a report, but nothing like a traditional report. I will, instead, take the freedom of following the flow of my thoughts and feelings
The program included two modules, the first consisted of Youness Idihoum and Aimane Idhajji, co-founders of the Creative Space L’blend in Tiznit, Morocco to visit Malmo, Sweden for a period of 18 days learning about the city’s cultural dynamic, and about artist and shared spaces in the city. The second module was to take place in Tiznit between the dates mentioned above in order to organize a set of workshops in Video Making, Graffiti, Digital Painting, Stop-Motion, and DIY. It was a chance for Swedish artists to exchange with Tiznit local youth with the aim of coming up with tangible works of art.
The program in Tiznit was supposed to involve no more than 20 people. However, we ended up working with 52. In the shadow of this success, snuggles a failure in terms of female representations, as we were supposed to have equal attendance, but looking at our context, we were able to find no more than 13 females.
On a different note, the impact was created in the idea transmitted through the art. The program was designed to introduce the participants to advocacy through visual arts. Most participants were applied arts students. Meaning, they were used to expressing themselves through artistic mediums, but not necessarily expressing ideas representative of causes and social missions. In this program, they were introduced to a new artistic process that implies a lot of attention to one’s entourage in terms of form and content. A good and easy example would be the graffiti workshop in which the participants were asked to paint their version of utopia. The participants painted what would be, to them, a fraction of a just world. Following to their painting, came the turn of their instructor to add his touch. Ossian Theselius’ artistic style is imitating clouds’ movement. And in that imitation lies freedom for him and for the receiver to interpret the art work in their own way. For freedom is to him the base line of a utopia, and it should be represented in the form, content, and process of his artworks.
The video making workshop on the other hand, was an introductory workshop in which the participants learned the basics of video making and dealing with a camera. In addition to this, a short rooftop concert was organized for JOY, a Swedish hip hop artist that introduced our local audience to her strong art. Her, being a female artist portraying a fierce image gives her art the responsibility to advocate about gender related issues.
In the same context, Isabel, a Swedish artist based in the US worked with female participants on DIY in the subject of burning issues, which is a concept she has been developing for some time now allowing her to use her art to represent female related issues in the form of visually burning mediums.
The stop-motion workshop can talk of itself through this video. the video was made by Markus Yohansson in collaboration with participants from Tiznit who took part in the painting process.
The last workshop to be mentioned was actually the first the program started with: Digital Painting, and it was a great way for participants to start the program in order to fully grasp the purpose behind it as it introduced them to the concept of paying attention to details around them starting from the space in which the workshop is taking place to further places. Then, with the freedom of our imagination, gather all data, and come up with artworks far from the usual, but very close to the essence of what the artist stands for.
Aside from all the workshops organised, the artists took their art to the streets and left beautiful prints in the neighborhood of Albid, a marginalized area in the city of Tiznit. They all generously took from their time and energy to put their art on public walls. JOY, mentioned earlier, was the only one who was not able to paint outside as she had to leave earlier than everybody. However, she was generous enough to work on a beautifully expressive painting on the rooftop of L’blend creative space.
Kim’s painting particularly, was an attempt from him to demonstrate the story of creation of Tiznit his own way. His style and influences were joined to the neighborhood’s energy then came up with beautiful results. Everyone from the neighborhood got involved in the making of that piece, some by providing food, others by providing ladders, and everyone helped paint. According to Kim, if anything impacted him along the process of painting, it was the atmosphere in which the work was done.