In her series ‘Inside’, Btihal Remli explores the meaning of immaterial spaces in contemporary Morocco, and how the practice of religious rituals can transform secular places into sacred worlds.
“When thinking about religion, usually one always has in mind the image of gorgeous sacred buildings. But with Islam, this is different. Instead of seeing Muslim Communities praying in great Mosques, you see them praying inside shops, storehouses, sports halls, or parking places. Even though they practice their belief in secular places, Muslims can still transform their surroundings into sacred worlds. How is that possible?
Michel de Certeau wrote: “space is a practiced place”. It means that what we call “space” emerges out of a performance. Islam provides a whole sequence of acts, which are the “Rituals”. They help create “spaces” and to define borders.
‘Inside’ tells the story of a journey in Oujda, Morocco, where the daily life is structured by those rituals. Prayers are being performed right in the middle of the marketplace. If there is no water, a stone is being used to symbolize the lavation. In these moments, the complete environment is transformed; immaterial spaces emerge that neither have walls nor roofs. These “spaces” are invisible but have a sensible presence.” – Btihal Remli
Btihal Remli is a Moroccan Photographer born in 1987 in Germany. She studied in Germany, Portugal, and Austria and graduated with a Masters degree from the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. Her work is inspired by questions on spatial, social and religious identity. Her motivation is a deep examination of her culture and origins in Morocco, and their clash with her German identity. As a result, social issues and questions arise. Her photography is a tool and a method to understand and communicate her point of view on this debate. In fact, her photographs are observations that evolve into a position. Btihal’s work has been exhibited in Austria, Italy, Hungary, Germany, UAE, Switzerland, and Morocco. She is represented by VOICE Gallery in Marrakech. You can find out more about her here.
Don’t miss Btihal Remli’s upcoming exhibition in Venice, Italy
Opening: May 11th, 2017, from 18:00h – 21:00h
Exhibition: May 13th – 22th July, 2017; and Aug 23th – October 31th, 2017
Spazio Norbert Salenbauch, Calle Larga XXII Marzo. Entrada de Calle Sartor da Veste, Venice
All Rights Reserved. © Btihal Remli