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1-54 Art Fair Supports Morroco Earthquake Victims

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The 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair is currently holding a project to support the recovery and reconstruction of Marrakesh Medina. Marrakech. Morocco holds a special place in the 1-54 art fair family as it is not only the home of the founder, Touria  El Glaoui but also one of the locations where the fair is held. Their announcement on Instagram highlights their extension of support in the reconstruction of Morroco through their various networks.

Residents take refuge in open areas to stay safe from aftershocks in Marrakech, Morocco – September 10, 2023. Image courtesy of Art News.

The earthquake, measuring 6.8 on the magnitude scale, was the most significant seismic event in the region for over a decade. It took place at 11 p.m., September 8, 2023, leading to the collapse of ancient mosques and sites. This caused the inhabitants of Marrakesh to evacuate their homes out of fear of structural failure. Additionally, parts of the protective wall surrounding the historic city also gave way, raising concerns about public safety.
The earthquake did not affect a major part of the modern city, as businesses resumed swiftly the next week. However, the earthquake has reportedly claimed 2,800 lives. It is a natural disaster that has profoundly affected Morocco and its cultural heritage.

On Tuesday, many earthquake survivors in Morocco faced hardship in makeshift shelters after spending a fourth night in the open. Meanwhile, villagers in the severely affected mountain regions expressed frustration over the authorities’ failure to assist. For this reason, Touria El Glaoui, the founding director of 1-54, intends to collaborate with local partners, including the Museum of African Contemporary Art Al Maaden, the Montresso* Art Foundation, and Musée Yves Saint Laurent, to develop comprehensive, long-term reconstruction plans.
1-54 further issued a statement encouraging them to visit Morocco.

Image courtesy of 1-54 Art Fair, Instagram.

They add that Morroco has a rich and diverse cultural scene and that it will be vital for the country’s economic recovery. In addition, they emphasized that relief and rebuilding efforts are already underway, and a significant portion of Marrakech remains intact. The efforts to assist the affected survivors shine a light on the importance of international cultural representation for African countries. We commend Touriah and the whole 1-54 art fair team for providing their support to the earthquake victims in Morocco. For those willing to support, click here to contact the 1-54 art fair.


Rose Mwikali Musyoki is a creative writer from Nairobi, Kenya. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Business and Finance from the University of Embu, Kenya, and is the founder of Bloom Inc, an art startup in Kenya. Currently, she works as a writer for Art News Africa.

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