northern morocco

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You know what I love? 
Names. 
You know what I love more than just names? 
Geographically accurate names.

(Current popular names all over the world)

The following information was found here

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anonymous asked:

Do you have any images of the henna designs used and how they vary across different ethnic groups? I'm familiar with henna and my Indian neighbour taught me her traditions around it and applied some designs to me when I was a curious child and she was getting ready for a wedding, but I would assume designs very considerably between cultures as well as the context in which they are used. Would you be able to direct me to info on this? Thanks :)

You’re absolutely right — henna designs vary considerably from region to region… I often post pictures about it if you look through my henna tag. Here are some examples of different styles:

This is the style traditionally done in much of Morocco, known today simply as “bildi” (’rustic’ or ‘old-fashioned’)… Commonly associated with the “Imperial Cities” of Fes, Meknes, and Marrakech, it shares many similarities with the traditional embroidery (terz) of that region — note the division of space into diamonds and triangles, the use of parallel lines, and the toothed edging. Photo taken by me in Fes, 2014:

This is another style seen in Morocco, in the southern regions and Sahara. This “Sahrawi” style shares some elements with the henna of central and northern Morocco, but is similar in layout to the henna done in Mauritania. Photo from Flickr:

The henna of Mauritania is breathtakingly unique and immediately recognizable. In my opinion the henna artists of Mauritania are among the most talented and technically accomplished in the world; designs were traditionally done in reverse with a tape resist, and today they are also drawn (there’s actually a whole book about it!). Photo from Flickr:

And West Africa has its own style as well, commonly seen in Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, and other places in the region — done in reverse with tape, like in Mauritania, but with longer lines and different layouts. Photo by Casey McMenemy, from my article on henna in West Africa:

There is also a unique and recognizable style in East Africa, on the Swahili Coast (Kenya, Tanzania, etc.). Unfortunately today they often use the dangerous “black henna” chemical dye, but as you can see it can be easily replicated with natural henna (from this article on henna on the Swahili Coast):

The countries of the Arabian Peninsula have their own set of styles too, known as khaleeji (“Gulf”), which are today immensely popular around the world (even in places like Morocco and India which have their own longstanding traditions of henna design). In the Khaleej itself there are many henna salons with local and international artists, and so the designs are constantly evolving; the constant, for me, is the open layout and the contrast between thick and thin. Here’s an example of some contemporary khaleeji-style work (from Instagram):

Of course, Persia was once the heartland of henna, and in the Safavid period we have many depictions of beautiful, elaborate henna patterns in illustrated manuscripts. While the tradition died out during the Qajar period under the influence of Western fashion, it is clear that there was once a “Persian style” of henna, which some artists have attempted to continue or revive. This is a (very zoomed-in) detail from Mir Sayyid Ali’s 1540 masterpiece “A Nomadic Encampment” (and for more on Persian henna, see this article):

And while India came rather late to the henna-pattern game, developing traditions of henna art only in the 18th-19th century, by the 20th century South Asia had become one of the centres of henna art worldwide, and the henna styles from the region are probably the most common and recognizable today. That’s not to say that they were always what we think of today as “Indian-style” henna — here’s an example of Rajasthani designs from the 1950s recorded by Jogendra Saksena, which are quite different than the style of henna common in India today:

Not to mention the fact that within the Indian subcontinent, there are (or have been, historically) distinct regional styles: Pakistani, Marwari, Rajasthani, and more… And of course, henna designs are constantly changing! What was popular and stylish twenty years ago is not the same as what was popular ten years ago, or what is popular now. Especially with the interconnectedness of the internet, artists around the world are able to learn from each other, spread innovations, and merge styles in new and exciting ways.

Compare this old-fashioned, recognizably Pakistani-style design (from Flickr):

To the contemporary work of Pakistani-American artist (and dear friend of mine) Sabreena Haque, who combines motifs and layouts from Indian, Pakistani, Gulf, and Moroccan patterns, along with inspiration from many other areas of art and nature (from her Instagram):

And there’s so much more to explore! There seems to be a unique style of henna patterns in the Balkans, similar to their tattooing and embroidery. What were henna designs like in medieval Spain? Yemenite Jews had their own unique patterns and techniques as well, which still need more research. And there’s more to say about the evolution of henna designs in Morocco too!

I could go on and on, but perhaps that’s enough for now. Let me know if I can answer any other questions!

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Chefchaouen, a small town in northern Morocco, has a rich history, beautiful natural surroundings and wonderful architecture, but what it’s most famous for are the striking and vivid blue walls of many of the buildings in its “old town” sector, or medina.

The maze-like medina sector, like those of most of the other towns in the area, features white-washed buildings with a fusion of Spanish and Moorish architecture. The brilliantly blue walls, however, seem to be unique to Chefchaouen. They are said to have been introduced to the town by Jewish refugees in 1930, who considered blue to symbolize the sky and heaven. The color caught on, and now many also believe that the blue walls serve to repel mosquitoes as well (mosquitoes dislike clear and moving water).

Whatever the reason, the town’s blue walls attract visitors who love to wander the town’s narrow streets and snap some beautiful photos. 

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Moroccan door architecture and retro mosaic tiling, Asilah, Northern Morocco, 2015-08-10.

Asilah is a sleepy fishing town in the North of Morocco, just one hour south of Tangier.

The town lies in the middle of a fascinating history in historical, architectural and artistic terms. It’s 3,600 year old history that includes a varied range of occupiers, involving Roman, Arab Portuguese, Spanish and French colonisation. Its architecture has been heavily influenced by these different periods of occupation, which is one of the main reasons for its unique and characterful feel. Evidence of Mediterranean design can be seen in the rampart walls and gates themselves, reflecting the Spanish & Portuguese influence on the Asilah’s development, Roman ruins can be found in the nearby town of Larache and Arab influences are more subtly found in the decorative window shutters and the labyrinth like medina layout to the streets. 

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Traditional Amazigh jewelries from Morocco:

  1. Amazigh fibula from Northern Morocco
  2. Silver, coral and glass paste earrings (early 1900s)
  3. Woman’s necklace from Taznit (silver, Amber and shell)
  4. Pair of woman’s headdress pendants and at the bottom a pair of woman’s hair ring ornaments (silver, enamel, coral, amber, shells, glass beads)
  5. Amazigh necklace (old amber, natural branch coral, shells, glass beads, silver amulets)
  6. Pair fibulae (silver, enamel, silver gilt, coral, old coins and glass paste)
  7. Four necklaces and a pair of fibula. Left and right: Anti Atlas region. Middle: copal amber necklace from the 19th century. Middle: amber and silver. Bottom: fibula (Rif, Nador region, 1st quarter 20th century)
  8. Frontal parure from the Bani region (early 1900s)
  9. Silver Talisman Cross (1st half of the 20th century)
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Chefchaouen, a small town in northern Morocco, has a rich history, beautiful natural surroundings and wonderful architecture, but what it’s most famous for are the striking and vivid blue walls of many of the buildings in its “old town” sector, or medina.

Republic of the Rif, 1921–1926

The Republic of the Rif was created in September 1921, when the people in northern Morocco revolted and declared their independence from Spanish occupation as well as from the Moroccan sultan.

The flag features a crescend and an unusual six-pointed star. Known in Israel as the Shield of David, it was also used frequently in Muslim flags as the “seal of Solomon” and is prominent part of the Moroccan flag. Red has considerable historic significance and was used on Moroccan flags since the 12th century.

The Rif Republic, was dissolved by Spanish and French occupation forces in 1926, after long and bloody battles of the Rif War in which chemical weapons were used against the Berber populations by Spanish occupation forces.

Sidi Ifni (سيدي إفني‎‎) is located in southwest Morocco on the shores of the Atlantic with a population of 20,000. The economy is based on fishing. Locals are mainly Chleuhs and people from the Ait Baamrane tribe. The Ait Baamran have long inhabited the area, working in husbandry and trading with Europeans and northern Morocco, being intermediaries in the trans-Saharan trade.

anonymous asked:

Does henna belong to one specific culture? Because I've heard of henna belonging to others too, such as many African cultures (Swahili and more specifically Kikuyu.)

Very accurate. To my knowledge, Northern Africa (Morocco to Egypt) and Eastern Africa (Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea etc) use henna for body decoration.

Chréa is a town in Algeria, located in Blida Province, Bougara District, in a mountainous area named Tell Atlas. In its municipality is situated the Chréa National Park, one of the smallest national parks of the country, and a ski resort. Within the park is one of the few relict populations of the endangered primate, the Barbary Macaque, Macaca sylvanus; this species of primate originally had a much wider range in Northern Algeria and Morocco. Located in the Atlas Mountains at 1,458 m above sea level, Chréa has a cool Mediterranean climate, with an average annual precipitation of 916 mm. Summers are warm and dry; winters are chilly and wetter, with snowfall. This is one of the coldest places in Algeria.