The Jardin Rouge is an artists’ residency center located in Morocco, near Marrakesh, at the foot of the Atlas Mountains. Created by the Montresso Art Foundation, the idea was to have a place of exchange and creation open only to artists, with no other purpose than seeing them evolve and grow in their creative process. The residency boasts an amazing environment and very comfortable working conditions, and it is open to both well-known and emerging artists. The only requirement is to have talent. And those who have passed through “Le Jardin Rouge” have that in spades! Lucky for us, the owner has a particularly strong passion for urban art, and the residency offers urban artists complete freedom of artistic expression.
It sounds like paradise, and that’s not far from the truth. The photographic work of Bart, from UrbanPresents, makes me fall in love with this place. The landscape, the light, everything is there to sublimate the work of the artists, whether in the park (which covers is 13 hectares!) or inside a building that also serves as an exhibition space.
French artist GoddoG was recently an artist-in-resident at Le Jardin Rouge. In his own words…
It was super welcoming. Le Jardin Rouge is one-of-a-kind. The main purpose of my visit was to deepen my technique on canvas by linking my work on walls with my work on canvas. The 10-week residency helped me develop my technical skills, and allowed me to concentrate on my work while expanding it. In addition, Le Jardin Rouge is a place to meet other artists and exchange opinions, which helped me develop further as an artist and as a critical thinker.
The first time I returned to Paris after a few years of exile in Montreal, I was very excited by the idea of all the art I’d be able to find on the streets. But I rapidly realized that it would be difficult to hunt street art as I used to in Montreal… not the same art, not the same way to catch it. Paris is very intense, always the same artists, at every street corner, seen hundreds time on blogs, Flickr, instagram, etc… not easy to have the sensation of finding something new… not that I hate these productive artists, I really appreciate some and respect all of them, but I expected something different. So I asked someone that really comes from the streets in this city to give me a private art tour, Lilyluciole. Lucky me! What she showed me is not necessarily new, except a few pieces, but what a pleasure to see some precious artists like Kub, Baubô, Kraken, Kouka, Koleo, Sobre, Hopnn, Le Diamantaire, to see the refreshing pieces of my friend Lilyluciole in Paris, to admire illegal art work by Swoon, Stinkfish, Invader, Mr Chat, to discover some amazing unknown spots, like the rue de l’Ourcq in the north of the city with walls covered by Da Cruz, Batsh, Sly2, Orfée… and some other spots, the Rue Desnoyers, Les Usines Éphémères. So, here is a personal point of view of the streets of Paris, by Lily and me.