Berber Women of Morocco

by - Monday, June 09, 2014

The Berber women of Morocco are in Paris, in an exhibition of Berber clothing, jewellery, and culture. The exhibit is installed at the Fondation Pierre Bergé – Yevs Saint Laurent until July 20, 2014.

The exhibition is dedicated to Berber women who are seen as the key to the survival of the Berber culture. As the exhibition text makes clear:
It is an occasion not only to share the richness of the Amazigh civilization, but also to honor Berber women, to whom the Amazigh culture owes its survival. The survival of a culture depends on the transmission of language, but also on certain, essentially feminine, skills, such as weaving or, in the northern region of the Kingdom, pottery. The exhibition is an opportunity to display the diverse and extraordinary beauty of Berber adornments.  

We visited the exhibition on our way back from Morocco. It is an extraordinary collection of textiles, jewellery and artifacts. The work is exquisitely staged and augmented by the black and white photography of Jean Besancenot an ethnologist who travelled throughout Morocco while serving with the French military. The exhibition catalogue is presently the only printed collection of his photography available.

Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé developed a life long relationship with Morocco after their first visit in 1966. In Marrakech they purchased the Majorelle Garden, founded by painter Jacques Majorelle. The garden had fallen into disrepair. Bergé and Saint Laurent renovated, opened the garden to the public, and established The Berber Museum on the grounds. For more information see the Berber Women of Morocco press release.

Maiwa has created a display of Morocco jewellery in our main store. There are pieces of Berber, Arabic and Tuareg origin. This distinctive work is for sale. Here is a small sample of some of the pieces that are in the store.

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