Since I have been living in Morocco, I have resided in the countryside outside of Essaouira, in the Essaouira medina, and currently in my new home studio in a village a short distance from Essaouira. My house is bathed in generous sunlight, which makes it an excellent space for painting as well as living. It also has an open floor plan which is unusual in Morocco but I am fortunate because I love to entertain and luxuriate in open space and light.
It was important to me that the garden be sensitive to the needs of my two dogs, Daisy and Dottie, to reducing the need for water, and that it provide a comfortable place to entertain. I wanted the design to reflect my esthetic, what I call
“ Moroccan Modern", and it does!
I brought furniture that I designed while living in the medina to the new house. One important thing I did and continue to do is meet Moroccan artists and collect their work (artwork shown is by Essaouira art naif artist Azeddine). It is vital for me to have art by other artists in my home. Since being in this colorful country, I have fallen in love with the cement patterned tile that is made locally. The tiles have inspired my furniture designs (especially the dining room table pictured above and the garden bench), the general garden layout, and are also a major force in my painting.
Architectural elements such as doors, window and hardware have keenly influenced my painting and impacted my furniture design. The latch on my dining room armoire is a direct interpretation of a medina door lock.
A friend and animal activist told me that my house and garden are “a combination of a Moroccan approach to modern, a mix of Bauhaus and a bit of Provence”. I found that to be an excellent summation of my design sensibility.