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Diary

Filtering by Tag: Morocco

Fez, the Lure

Sophia Khan

Watercolor on Arches paper

Watercolor on Arches paper

copyright © Sophia Khan

The Royal Palace doors of Fez, striking and mysterious, complex and geometric, offer a breadth of visual poetry for the artist and writer to reflect upon.  Long time followers will recognize these as a favorite subject to 'rest' my pen and paintbrush...

Along those lines, the below poem began shortly after completing this watercolor.  It is inspired by a few things: my time traveling in Morocco; a book by Titus Burckhardt titled, Fez, City of Islam; which I read during my undergraduate architectural thesis for a design project in Fez; and the process of completing this painting and reflecting on it afterwards.  

~

Thresholds of Fez

Fez is a city of Thresholds

A threshold between past and future.
The past remains precious to the heartbeat of the city
giving it the magic and lure it emits to this day.

The past is also nostalgic
and one cannot help but wonder,
Will the depth of traditions past, of a culture rich with mysticism,
continue to give this city the meaning it once did?

Handmade crafts and wares,
the techniques of which are handed down from generations past...
Will they remain the pulse that was once the lifeblood of the city?
Or will they slowly fade away, along with the longing for something new,
something different, more 'modern', more for the outsider?

Fez is a city of Thresholds

There is mystery behind its closed doors.
What lies before in sharp contrast to what lies beyond.

The gates surrounding the city, once built to protect it,
now stand as invitations to enter leaving notions of space and time aside.

The darkness, mystery, and frenzy of the maze-like city and its narrow souks 
strikingly contrast its light filled courtyards.
Within them, cushions for reclining, colorful tiles, fountains, plantings,
The romance of it all being accented by the clattering of glass teacups 
brimming with scent and simple luxury.
All hidden from public eye, as if protecting innermost longings.

Fez is a city of Thresholds

For the local, this merging of light and dark, of outer and inner,
is a constant reminder, a constant celebration of dreams and awakening.

For the traveler it is revealing and eye opening to encounter this.
And one leaves awe-struck, with a deepened knowledge of self,
Forever instilled with the longing to become one with desire.

Sophia Khan

I hope you enjoyed this poem, and if you would love to bring Fez, the Lure into your home, or would like to see my other works for sale, please see the links below:


Royal Palace doorknocker, Fez

Sophia Khan

copyright © Sophia Khan

Morocco, desert and medina

Morocco...I recall traveling through the desert and catching glimpses of nomads in miles and miles of what seems like nothingness to us, but is home to them.

As if suspended in a different time.  Where did you come from?  Where are you going?  Perhaps these are projections of our own way of living that do not translate to the desert life.

Their language is not our language and we must pique our curiosity from a respectful distance; through the windows of our luxury buses which to them do not exist.

It is from here that we arrive in Fez, the maze, the puzzle.  It is within its captured gems of air and light filled courtyards that we suddenly find ourselves lightened just like the nomad.  But only for a moment until we leave again and enter the frenzy. 

by Sophia Khan

If you enjoy my travel inspired art and writing, be sure to subscribe to my watercolor inspiration journal here.  It is here that I give a private and intimate glimpse into my studio, and my journey.  I look forward to seeing you there.

 

Royal Palace doors, Fez III

Sophia Khan

copyright © Sophia Khan~watercolor on Arches paper

A geometry displaying expertise in mathematics and proportion, as well as a sense of affinity towards infinity, the universe, and the divine. A harmonic coexistence of discipline and the ethereal. 

Interested in Fine Art prints of my artwork for your home? Be sure to subscribe to my watercolor email journal here to hear about the launch of my online shop. Subscribers also receive a new watercolor image in each issue which they may print for their homes.  Hope to see you there.