Atelier de l'Observatoire / Madrassa Collective

Casablanca, Morocco

22000 Casablanca
Casablanca, Morocco


The ATELIER DE L'OBSERVATOIRE (art and research) designs, produces and disseminates projects conceived as tools to support Moroccan contemporary creation nationally, and internationally.

It seeks to create the necessary conditions for projects unsuited to the current systems of artistic, academic and cultural production in the region to flourish, and to present these projects to a Moroccan and international audience, bringing together artists, researchers and the general public.

To this end, the Atelier de l’Observatoire experiments with alternative approaches through educational programs (MADRASSA), production space and guidance for emerging artists (LA RUCHE), research programs (THE INVISIBLES) and participative art projects (COLLECTIVE MUSEUM, THE GREENHOUSE, THE AQUARIUM) in the public space, in rural locations and city outskirts.

The proposed research contexts and circumstances take shape in the form of long-term projects that are in constant renewal. The Atelier de l’Observatoire develops varied projects in and around the city of Casablanca, to which artists, students, researchers and local, regional and international institutions participate.

The Observatoire's workshop is a rural research and creation space in Laasilat, Bouskoura (32km from Casablanca). It boasts a well-equipped studio for the production of works in diverse media. A greenhouse and organic vegetable garden are also located on the site.


Madrassa (school in Arabic) is a collective of curators and art practitioners based in Africa and the Middle East.

Envisioning exhibition making as a research and critical endeavour, Madrassa Collective aims at experimenting and investigating collective practices and transborder collaborations as a means to resist and confront the difficulties of art making in the regions the collective comes from.

Madrassa Collective works on a variety of geographical and conceptual territories through exhibitions, publications, researches and mapping exercises. Through its projects, the collective aims to:
- alter the dominant "Western-centrism” in modern and contemporary art thinking and writing, investigating and promoting the conditions for the birth and for the development of collective and independent artistic projects;
- rethink socially engaged practices in art, by focusing particularly on processes of institution building and their normative configurations, and as an experimental curatorial body itself testing the very processes of collective making and the making of a collective.

Members of Madrassa are Nadine Atallah, Nouha Ben Yebdri, Victoria Dabdoub, Francesca Masoero, Aude Christel Mgba, Rim Mejdi, Léa Morin and Marc Mouarkech.

Collective museum (project)
Aquarium (project)
The greenhouse (project)
The Collective Museum. Something to Generate From, Kusthal Aarhus 2016 ©Jens Moller
Madrassa Collective. Something to Generate From, Kusthal Aarhus 2016 ©Jens Moller
Invisible Borders. Something to Generate From, Kusthal Aarhus 2016 ©Jens Moller