In a very special partnership with Peters Valley School of Craft, TSA presents a spectacular, one-of-a-kind crafts tour to Morocco (May 7-17, 2019). Working with Distant Horizons, a leader in worldwide educational travel, our specially curated itinerary (designed exclusively for Peters Valley and the fine crafts community), features an insiders’ look the crafts and culture of this uniquely artistic nation.
Morocco has captured the imaginations of visitors for centuries with its layers of rich history, vibrant landscapes, and a craft culture that fuses indigenous Berber traditions with Arab, Jewish, Andalusian, and other European influences.
Techniques, passed on through specialist guilds where a master instructs apprentices, is at the core of Moroccan crafts. The preservation of these skills has been a conscious priority and today tile makers, wood and stucco carvers, metal workers, ceramicists, weavers, and embroiderers continue to work using traditional techniques to create beautiful, authentic pieces.
Our carefully designed program focuses on this extraordinary craft tradition. We begin in the medieval Arab city of Fez where we meet with acclaimed artisans as well as artists, designers and photographers who are breathing new life in to the ancient city. Visit two notable eras of Moroccan history at the Imperial city of Meknes, once home to the grand Moroccan sultanate, and the ancient Roman settlement of Volubilis, whose abandoned, graceful ruins sit atop of a stunning collection of mosaics. In Sefrou enjoy a workshop with Amina Yabis whose needle weaving buttons are used on robes and made into jewelry. We’ll spend two nights in the High Atlas Mountains understanding the unique ways of life of Morocco’s Berbers. Our trip ends in Marrakesh, immersed in the country’s proud artistic history on display in the surrounding architecture, elaborate tile mosaics, and traditional artisanship that define this ancient trading center.
-Enjoy a discussion on the preservation and restoration of the Medina of Fez with the American‐born director of the city’s Arab Language Centre, David Amster
-Wander through the city’s labyrinth of narrow alleys where you are surrounded by age‐old traditions and stop at the weaver’s souk and the ancient leather tanneries.
-Meet with members of the Bougueddach Collective, the largest and most successful group of weavers in Fez.
-Visit the Imperial City of Meknes, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The mausoleum there features walls of intricately carved plaster and delicately patterned tiles.
-Explore vast Roman ruins of Volubilis with its collection of mosaic floors that rival any in the world.
-Experience a private tour and wine tasting at Chateau Roselane, the main production facility of Celliers de Meknes. Enjoy lunch at Villa de Pins, a manor amid vast olive and fruit tree groves.
-Spend two nights in the beautiful High Atlas Mountains and enjoy private visits with a Berber community
-Visit Dar Bellarj, a cultural center, founded by a Swiss architect couple. Located in a beautiful old palace where the couple connects international artists with local women to produce contemporary works based on Moroccan heritage.
-Meet with Randall Bachner, a New York native and fashion photographer in a former life, who creates local fashion, melding traditional weaving techniques with a keen eye for contemporary patterns.
-Tour the new Yves Saint Laurent Museum, opened in October 2017. It houses thousands of articles of clothing and haute couture accessories, all carefully selected by Pierre Bergé.
The price for the trip is $6,990 per person double occupancy (single supplement $1,780) and includes 9 nights accommodations, most meals, a full-time hand-selected bi-lingual guide, all ground transportation, domestic airfare between Fez and Marrakesh, admission to all museums, galleries and performances, speaker fees, and all gratuities to drivers, guides, and tour manager.
The full itinerary is available here and the registration form can be found here. For additional information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or Peters Valley board member, Teresa Stack at (347) 461-8524 or at email@example.com. Space is extremely limited – please book early!
All proceeds from the program benefit the Textiles Association of America and Peters Valley, a non-profit school and 501c3.