Born 1973 in Meknes, Morocco, Ghizlane Sahli is an artist we love!
She studied at the École d’Architecture de Paris-Tolbiac and the École Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Paris-Belleville. Afterwards she came back to Morocco, this time to move to Marrakech.
The artist works primarily with waste and repurposed materials. She uses her interdisciplinary knowledge, ranging from architecture to embroidery, to create pieces of art from plastic bottles and silk.
Her inspiration comes from coral reefs, the human body, and hives. In her artworks the perfect shapes of nature, the scheme behind each entity, meet a sense of integration. Everything seems connected, alive.
Ghizlane Sahli’s career
Ghizlane Sahli combines the love for architecture with her enthusiasm for textiles. This particular union of arts made her win the Prize for Creation at the Trophée Couleurs in 2009.
As a result of her multidisciplinarity, she co-founded in 2012 the artist collective Zbel Manifesto, born from an environmental need. Its aim was to use repurposed materials in art creation. The collective participated at the Marrakesh Biennale in 2014, with an artwork called “Pimp My Garbage”.
From there, Salhi’s artistic recognition grew fast. She exhibited her artworks at David Bloch Gallery, Marrakech (2018) and Genesis, Institut Français, Rabat (2017).
Furthermore, her works were in The Body, Abla Ababou Gallery, Rabat (2018), L’or, Musée des civilisations de l’Europe et de la Méditerranée, Marseille (2018) and The Black Sphinx II, Primo Marella Gallery, Milan (2018).
Among this year’s participation, there is Africa now – MO.CA, Brescia, 1.54 Contemporary African Fair – Primo Marella Gallery, London, Africa Universe -Primae Noctis, Lugano, Quintessense, Not a Gallery, Paris and BISO Biennale de Sculptures de Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou.
Nowadays Ghizlane Sahli works with local artisan women. While creating, they constantly reinvent the ways to integrate silk into art.
Sahli transforms the material, giving it a new reason to be, a new meaning. That is why her three-dimensional “Alveoles” appears so dynamic, as it could change under the spectator’s eye.
Sahli’s solo exhibition “Histoires de Tripes” (2019) is her more recent work, displayed in London, Paris, Marrakesh, Milan, and Germany.
Ghizlane Sahli’s artworks made from recycled materials
For the artist, in the process of creating her cellular forms, everything starts with the recollection of plastic bags. Thanks to the artist’s architectural background, the plastic is sinuously integrated with a metal frame and then covered in silk threads.
Salhi’s ability to unify diverse materials so elegantly gives her a unique touch, a very personal vision of art. She gives expression to human form, showing what we are all made of.
Ghizlane Sahli uses intricate designs to create something that recalls coral reefs. ”Histoires de Tripes” includes sculptures and drawings. These represent perfectly the idea of integration the artist expresses in her pieces.
Art we love
Salhi’s artistic concept is universal. Everything suggests universality in her work: from the materials used, mostly plastic and silk, to the shapes of her pieces.
As a matter of fact, she doesn’t focus on society or belonging issues. While the man tries to give himself a definition, Ghizlane Sahli denies any social, religious or racial distinction. She focuses on a way wider issue: the origins.
Identity can create barriers, it can be an alienating concept. However, once there is no filter left, identity starts to embed everything that surrounds us. It becomes an exploration, an adventure.
Ghizlane Sahli thinks of the “Alveoli” as cells. These accumulate until something grows.
“I wanted to work on a subject that was just pureness, the inner part of us and the human body was the best subject for that. Using garbage was also for me something really universal because it concerns all of us. I wanted something that was like a tribute. This work is the exploration of the human body. Each artwork is zoomed into different parts of the body.”
So, environmental sustainability and the bridge between body and mind are two sides of a medal.
Ghizlane Sahli uses diverse media to convey her message: drawings, installations, and sculptures. Passing through them, it is certain: a sense of inclusion pervades all her art, and anyone, looking at her artworks, can feel being part of the universe.
Visit the artist’s gallery: Ghizlane Sahli’s gallery