I began traveling to the Maghreb in 2014, driven by the desire to know the new life of a friend who had returned to live with his family. The direct and unfiltered impact on Moroccan society allowed me to develop a critical perspective towards the country right from the start.
One of the most interesting facts that run through this project is that about 64 percent of the Moroccan population lives in urban centers. The rapid population growth that began in the 1960s and the related urbanization processes are slowly emptying rural areas and at the same time physically expanding cities. While it is true that urban centers are becoming increasingly large tanks for the masses, it is also true that Morocco's urban revolution is not matched by equal development in the supply of services, employment, and culture.
Despite this, it is undeniable that the modernization policy initiated by King Mohammed VI in the early 2000s has achieved positive economic, social, and infrastructural results. Indeed, in addition to the implementation of major projects such as highways, high-speed trains, ports, and the construction of satellite cities, Mohammed VI turned his attention to making the country more attractive to foreign investors by liberalizing some economic sectors.
The overall picture for a less careful eye is that of a stable, modern and far-sighted country.
Digging a little deeper the reality is quite different: the lack of a good education and a health care accessible to all is a distant reality. What is growing is instead the gap between rich and poor and social uprising due to the lack of freedom of expression.
"Morocco Mall" focuses specifically on the urbanization of the country and draws inspiration from similar processes that took place in postwar Italy in the 1950s and 1960s. The vast Italian literature on the subject helped me to create this parallelism and allowed me to reflect on the possible consequences on Morocco’s historical and cultural traditions.
The purpose of this project is to open a dialogue about the reading model I offer to those interested in going beyond the facade.