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Tiles of Casablanca

Wandering the streets of downtown Casablanca, one sees a whole other use of tile on building facades. Instead of the reddish concrete with colorful accents you see in Marrakech (which I documented here), the White City has a decidedly less decorated feel. As an early 20th century laboratory for art deco, art nouveau, modernist, and neo-Moroccan design, Casablanca emphasizes form over ornament. And yet, that great ceramic tradition can still be felt. Here's a glimpse of the use of tile I saw over the course of a couple days wandering around Casablanca.

The buildings in downtown Casablanca are, as the name might suggest, overwhelmingly white. And though they're rather gritty today, it was magical trying to imagine the gleaming white city on the edge of Africa it must have been in the 30s. I did come across some use of tile on facades, however, like this modernist building. None of the grand mosaic work here, but in a nod to local traditions this tall drink of water is clad in a raft of small, burgundy tiles.

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