For centuries, Morocco’s oases have been home to human settlements, agriculture, and important architectural and cultural heritage, thanks to trans-Saharan trade caravan routes. Today, these oases are home for nearly 2 million inhabitants in Morocco and contribute to the local and national economic and cultural development.
According to official figures, Morocco has lost two-thirds of its 14 million palm trees over the last century. Two-thirds of Morocco’s oasis habitat has vanished — a process accelerated by environmental changes in the recent decades. These climate change consequences have an economic toll on the oases inhabitants and endanger their livelihoods and very subsistence. Despite their best efforts, entire communities end up abandoning their lands and migrating towards cities with the hopes of a better life.
As a photographer I asked myself how can I avoid reproducing orientalist, Eden-like representations of the oasis? How can my work more truthfully express the reality of the deterioration that I observed?
For this reason, I wanted to explore and experiment with adding external and organic elements to my photographs (such as dry dates, dead skin of palm trees, soil ...) that are intimately linked to the spaces I chose to photograph. I also used acid and fire to take us back and forth between the reality of the present and the process of degradation that is yet to come.