Exhibition-tribute to the late Mohammed Melehi

In tribute to the late cosmopolitan artist and leader of Moroccan modernity, Mohamed Melehi, Loft Art Gallery organized this Thursday, December 8, an opening of the artist’s Solo Show entitled “Melehi at Loft Art Gallery 2009-2020”, an exhibition which will last a whole month.

The exhibition “Melehi at Loft Art Gallery 2009-2020” is an opportunity to look back on more than ten years of collaboration between the late artist and the Loft gallery. Thus, the gallery owners Myriem and Yasmine Berrada Sounni have tried to offer their shared experience through rare works selected from each decade of Mohamed Melehi’s career.

For Myriem Berrada Sounni, “courage, sensitivity and audacity. These virtues make Melehi a legend, a quiet force in the art world. For us, he was an accomplice, a kind of mentor, full of generosity, always involved directly or indirectly in the evolution of the gallery.” and adds that this exhibition “ it is not a question of making a retrospective, but rather of telling the story of the complicity between an artist and his gallery, and of humbly testifying to our great admiration for the artist and for the man who has left his mark on all the periods of his artistic career”.

Let’s contemplate together the last ten years of Melehi’s exhibitions, through the collection of his knowledgeable and awake words, to admire the work of this mature artist, a force of nature himself, at the peak of his artistic career.“, adds Yasmine Berrada Sounni.

Speaking about the artistic visionary aspect, the co-founder of the gallery says that Melehi ” approached life, by instinct, a visionary who drew on his sensitivity and strong introspection. Very inspired by Sufism and Zen, Melehi was first of all in harmony with himself, therefore able to receive the messages, the flashes“.

According to the testimony of the gallery, which has collaborated with the artist since 2009, the work of Mohamed Melehi has contributed to shaping the aesthetics of postcolonial and pan-Arab artistic networks through his geometric experiments, the cultural revolution operated with the School of Casablanca but also his work as a photographer, editor, designer, poster artist and muralist.

Over the past decade, Melehi has become increasingly concerned about the future of our dear
planet, by deploying its own visual language to face the challenges of climate change.

The artist spoke in 2019, a year before his death about a new start in his mobilization and in his art: “ This is what constitutes the essence of my thinking today, which has also become a major concern on the international level: what is the future of our planet, even the destiny of humanity? An exhibition on the climate would never have crossed my mind in the 50s or 60s, because our fight was different; it was above all social and political in parallel with our plastic and professional concerns“.

Melehi considered the wave in his artistic works ” a motif that I have been dealing with for fifty years. The wave motif is a very old alphabet to signify water, life and movement. It is also the most sensual trait“.

In this regard, Yasmine Berrada confides that he ” I happen to think that we have not yet stopped sufficiently on his last decade, to take the time to look at the evolution of his work and how his words were in tune with the times“.

“How important were they? How do they reason in his first discourse and how do they sublimate the genesis of his work? He treated his subjects – climatic disasters in flames, the female body in curves, the stars, the trees and the waves, in short, the force of our natural world – in a way that is so precise, so avant-garde, committed and sincere. How have the exhibitions of the past ten years once again illustrated the power of his work? Timeless and resolutely contemporary…”, she often wondered.

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