Wednesday Nov 16, 2022

Casablanca: who owns the city #2 Vertical Field Trip

In the meantime all four participants/makers of this Casablanca edition have arrived: Bodil Ouédraogo, Rubén Dario Kleimeer, Mouna Belgrini and Samba Soumbounou. Next to local insider Maria Daïf, Francien van Westrenen from Het Nieuwe Instituut joins us for the five day programme that in the end results in this series of conversations, but kicks off with a ‘vertical field trip’. An attempt to ground ourselves and be truly present in the Casablanca ‘here and now’.

Samba Soumbounou and Mouna Belgrini take us on a dazzling tour. We start in Firdaouss, a quiet small scale neighbourhood at the west side of the city, bordered by Lac El Oulfa, a former stone quarry, now an artificial lake. We pick up trash at the shore, circle the lake and have lunch at the central square. At the borders of the lake the pressure of commericial development is tangible. Samba took us here because he works in collaboration with the citizens, trying to improve the quality of public space. 

In the evening we take the tram to Sidi Moumen and Hay Mohammedi at the east side of Casa, two vibrant working class neighbourhoods. We visit a cultural centre, a local market and take a peek at colonial architectural heritage, that over the years is ‘decolonised’ by its inhabitants. 

This soundscape tries to capture the moods, sounds, views and smells of the day that made a big impression on all of us. 

 

References:

Bruit du frigo (urban creation collective) at Lac d’Oulfa
https://bruitdufrigo.com/en/projets/fiche/la-fabrique-du-lac/  
Subsaharan migrants in Morocco
https://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/growing-destination-sub-saharan-africans-morocco
Les Etoiles de Sidi Moumen, cultural centre
https://english.alaraby.co.uk/features/moroccos-sidi-moumen-cultural-centre-changing-futures-and-perceptions
Hay Mohammadi: a re-appropriated modernist neighborhood
https://www.thepolisblog.org/2012/07/adaptations-of-vernacular-modernism.html

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