previews

  • 4th Marrakech Biennale

    Marrakech Biennale
    2 Derb Moulay Abdallah Ben Hezzian Bab el-Ksour, Medina
    February 29–June 3

    Curated by Carson Chan and Nadim Samman

    This festival of arts explicitly buys into the city-branding directive of big, brash international showmanship. However, presided over by Vanessa Branson (sister of Richard) and featuring participants ranging from the writer Gideon Lewis-Kraus to the punk-rock/freak-folk duo CocoRosie and the artists Younes Baba-Ali, Tue Greenfort, and Karthik Pandian, the fourth Marrakech Biennale promises to be at once stranger than the last and as heterogeneous as ever. After the bombing in the city’s bustling Jemaa el-Fnaa last spring, the event is now doubly tasked with helping to clean up Marrakech’s image and demonstrating Morocco’s commitment to an open society and free expression. Anchoring this multiplatform program will be “Higher Atlas,” for which architecture critic Chan and independent curator Samman have asked artists, musicians, novelists, and architects to collaborate with local craftsmen to create new works in response to the exhibition venue (a sixteenth-century palace) and the Sufi notion of transcendence.