Souvenirs of Morocco
These posters have recently been reissued in Morocco. They are reproductions of old travel posters, some by famous artists, and most marked “Lith. Baconnier Alger”. I apologize that I couldn’t make many of the photos clearer; the posters are very well defined. Each is about 19 3/8” x 26 ¾” (there is some variation; ask if you want a specific size) and costs $30 including Priority shipping in the US. Email your order before you pay, to be sure I have your selection in stock.
Poster 0.120723 is of Tangier harbor and was painted by the French artist Majorelle in 1924; the signature is in a box on the lower left. (Some of you may have visited his former home, the Majorelle Gardens in Marrakesh.) Men and women sell vegetables in the foreground and the medina is on a hill across the water. The dominant colors are yellows, golds and browns, with the sky and water in blues. It is 19 3/8” x 26 ¾” and costs $30.
Poster 0.120724 is signed by Matteo Brondy. It depicts the famous Bab El-Mansour gate in Meknes, one of the four Imperial cities in Morocco. In front of the gate, people watch dancers and musicians. The green tones echo well the mosaic tile tones in the gate, still there today. As you can see on the larger photo, it has a blue border with title. It is 19 3/8” x 26 ¾” and costs $30.
Poster 0.120715 uses a desert horseman on a rearing stallion to encourage people to come to Morocco via Marseilles. $30 SOLD but can be ordered.
Posters 0.120716 are (from left to right) for:
Morocco (A) with one of the qsur or adobe forts from the south,
Fez (B) with a market scene at the Nejjarine fountain,
and Tangier (C) with a view of the harbor, perhaps from the garden of the Villa de France hotel where Matisse visited and painted.
(A) was done by Majorelle and is in shades of brown, green and ochre. (B) is signed, “Pontoy 1939,” and looks through a keyhole arch at a house and fountain with people in the foreground. It is done in the yellow, blue and pale green of some of the antique Fez pottery, and you can see it larger here. SOLD (C) seems to say M. Diaz-Merry 1928, and is in greens and blues with red flowers on the wall in the foreground. You can click here to see that one larger. Each costs $30.
Poster 1.11042 invites visitors to the coastal town of Mogador, now called Essaouira. Today it is known for windsurfing and the Gnawa music festival, in the recent past Jimi Hendrix used to hang out there, and further back there was a large Jewish population and Orson Welles made Othello there, using the ramparts you see in the oval inset at the bottom of the poster. The price is $30.
Poster 1.11046 advertises the northern town of Tetouan. It is in Spanish, since the Spanish controlled northern Morocco until Independence in 1956. The pinks and blues capture some of the effects of sun on the whitewashed buildings. It costs $30.
Poster 1.11050 adverstises all three countries of North Africa, though the woman's robe and headcovering look Tunisian to me. The colors orange and green are strong here. The price is $30.
Poster 3.11545 has a man mounted on a camel with a Moroccan town in the background, and advertises for the South of Morocco. The town is rather fanciful, since towns are angular and do not have structures with rounded domes. Tombs of local holy men have rounded domes, but they are not this large, and in fact are sometimes pointed in the south. The signature is Roger Irriera, and the price is $30.
Poster 3.11546 contrasts the traditional man having tea in a tent with an oasis and southern fortress-village in the background with modern air travel to North Africa. It costs $30.
Poster 3.11548 is unusual in two ways. One is that it advertises a village, "the holy village" of Moulay Idriss, which is not well-known like the cities visited by tourists. Secondly, this village was said to be either closed, or unwelcoming to, outsiders until the 1980s - so why advertise it 50 years earlier? Nevertheless, this poster has a great picture of village life; click on it to see all the details. It was done by Matteo Brondy and costs $30.
Poster 3.11551 has a horseman on his decorated horse, perhaps heading for a session of fantasia or horseplay, in front of an oasis town the color of Marrakesh with the High Atlas Mountains in the background. The price is $30.
Poster 3.12181 says "Moroccan Railroads" at the bottom, but on top in Arabic it says "Bab Tafilalet" or "Gate to the Tafilalet", the desert part of southeastern Morocco where the current ruling family came from about 300 years ago. Erfoud and Rissani today are in that area, and if you've visited the sand dunes you've been nearby. The structure indeed looks like a freestanding gate, which I don't think were traditional in Morocco, but now you see them marking the line between provinces (where they always make me think of better ways the money could have been spent). The people sitting in the foreground look like the cluster of elders who would gather at the entrance to a southern ksar or fortified village (against desert raiders) late each afternoon to discuss village affairs, and the earth color is typical of parts of southern Morocco. The price is $30.
Poster 3.12182 is striking with its bold forms in Art Nouveau style and pastel colors, and is dated 1929 and signed Derche. At the top it says "Winter, Spring in Morocco" and at the bottom "Fes Bab Mahrouk", which is a cemetery outside the old city walls. It costs $30.
Poster 3.12188 advertises travel from Bourdeaux to Morocco and is signed by Jeanne Thil. The scene is Marrakesh because of the Koutoubia mosque tower, although the trees are not there now, with people (I think all male) passing by. That street is still one of the main ones in Marrakesh, full of people, but today includes lots of women and tourists. The price is $30.
Poster 3.12193 is one of my favorites, both because of the unusual perspective and because of the sheep (do all textile people like sheep??). The shadow is of the Koutoubia, the 12th century mosque tower in Marrakesh, and the round white structure is the shrine for a local holy man...with shepherd and sheep that one might well see near such a shrine. It costs $30.