Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Morocco and Brydie Mack

I stand in a portico hung with gentian-blue ipomeas … and look out on a land of mists and mysteries; a land of trailing silver veils through which domes and minarets, mighty towers and ramparts of flushed stone, hot palm groves and Atlas snows, peer and disappear at the will of the Atlantic cloud drifts.”

– Edith Wharton, In Morocco

On my 'Bucket List' is a trip to Marrakech - all my life I've been drawn to busy, colourful living and many of the places I want to travel to are full of bustle, colour and noise!  These places are a direct contrast to how I live, with my penchant for white, clean spaces, minimal clutter and order throughout.  Somehow though, the colours, textures and busyness of Africa and India are a good counterpoint and source of inspiration for me. As I haven't made it, yet, to Morocco, I've had to make do with dreaming about it; a previous post here combined my love of white with a Morrocan interior but my latest find is full of colour and texture. Brydie Mack is an Australian stylist and photographer and has shot the latest campaign for Billabong in Morocco.  From hidden alleys, deserted Riads and the beautiful seaside town of Essouria, she has captured the energy and essence of this beautiful country.  I love these photographs and hope you will too.

“To visit Morocco is still like turning the pages of some illuminated Persian manuscript all embroidered with bright shapes and subtle lines.”

– Edith Wharton, 1927

“Crisply geometric patterns of blue-and-white zellij, sun-bleached panels of carved cedar, rhythmic arcades of white plaster, sinuous lines of wrought-iron balconies: each reveals the hand of a master craftsperson and the beauty of refined materials.”

– Susan Sully, New Moroccan Style: The Art of Sensual Living

“Inside, the ceiling is low, cobwebbed, and the shelves beneath it cluttered with treasure. There are ancient Berber chests, silver teapots, ebony footstools, and swords once used by warring tribes, and cartons of postcards left by the French, Box Brownie cameras, candlesticks, silk wedding belts, and camel headdresses crafted from indigo wool.”

from Tahir Shah’s introduction to Marrakesh: Through Writers’ Eyes

“In 1931, without any preconceived notion of what I should find there, I paid a visit to Morocco. Two months, I thought, would suffice for seeing the place. And so they would have if what I saw had not awakened a wish to see more, a wish which seemed to grow even as it was being satisfied. At first it expressed itself as a desire to wander over the surface of the land … After the War I returned to Morocco and bought a home there. This time I became aware of the fact that it was not the landscape I wanted to know, but the people.”
– Paul Bowles

“With the afternoon heat too suffocating in the square, the light too bright for any but a Marrachi’s eyes, I slipped into the labyrinth of the medina. Cool vaulted stone, courtyards latticed with bamboo staves, casting zebra stripes across the merchants and their stalls. What an emporium – mountains of tumeric, paprika, salted almonds and dates, yellow leather slippers laid out in rows, ostrich eggs and incense, chameleons in wire cages, and beef tenderloins nestled on fragrant beds of mint.”

from Tahir Shah’s introduction to Marrakesh: Through Writers’ Eyes

“… I wish I could tell you the wonder of the souks and marketplaces; the brilliant overflowing of spices, olives, fabrics; the witchcraft stalls; the fishmongers; the piles of mint and thyme scenting the air . . . and even more than this is the wonder of its becoming familiar, the sufficiency and contentment in knowing the names of things, the words to tell the taxi drivers, the sense and reason behind the lives of Moroccans …”

– Melissa Manlove, ‘Letter from Morocco’, Travelers’ Tales

“From far off, through circuitous corridors, came the scent of citrus-blossom and jasmine, with sometimes a bird’s song before dawn, sometimes a flute’s wail at sunset, and always the call of the muezzin in the night …”

– Edith Wharton, In Morocco

All images Brydie Mack

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