Abdeslam Ziou Ziou is an independent researcher and art consultant whose research focuses on collective art practices and dynamics, pedagogical experiments and the development of the art world in post-colonial Morocco since the 1960s. He is currently the Project and Research Coordinator at L’Atelier de l’Observatoire in Casablanca.
Through his archival research on oral and buried written histories, Ziou Ziou seeks to address the multiple modalities of writing art history that emerge from a particular territory and context, and cast a critical gaze on concepts of modernity, identity and transnationalism. He is also interested in the possible intersections between artistic practices and research methods in social science.
As part of a residency under the School of Casablanca project in Morocco (2021), Ziou Ziou is developing an installation entitled Madness Poetry Resistance(s), based upon his investigations of the family archives of the Berrechid Psychiatric Hospital in Morocco and its ground-breaking therapeutic practices at the junction of art and psychiatry.
Ziou Ziou has participated in a number of exhibitions and trans-disciplinary art and research programmes, including Untie to Tie–Movement.Bewegung (part of the Houdoud programme), ifa-Galerie Berlin (2019) and Ultrasanity.On Madness, Sanitation, Antipsychiatry and Resistance, SAVVY Contemporary, Berlin (2019).
He has received numerous grants and fellowships, including CAORC/Mellon Fellowship in Modern Art History, Centre d'Étude Maghrébines à Tunis (CEMAT) (2020–2021) and the Casa de La Cultura Oaxaqueña internship scholarship in Mexico (2011), which he undertook during his Masters.
Ziou Ziou was the Mediation Training Coordinator and Mentor for the Al Moutawassit: cultural mediation as a meeting point programme at Manifesta 13 Biennale, Marseille (2020). He was also Project and Research Manager, L’Atelier de l’Observatoire, Casablanca (2018–2020).
He has a BA in Applied Foreign Language (English and Spanish) from the Université François Rabelais, Tours, France (2010). He also holds an MA in International Coopération from the Université Charles de Gaulle Lille 3, France and an MA in Social Anthropology from the Ecole des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), Paris (2013 and 2017 respectively).
Born in 1986 in Casablanca, Ziou Ziou currently lives and works between Casablanca and Amboise, France.
School of Casablanca
KW Institute for Contemporary Art and Sharjah Art Foundation, in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Marokko, ThinkArt and Zamân Books & Curating have initiated the School of Casablanca, a collaborative project that takes as its starting point the legacy of the Casablanca Art School and its innovative pedagogical methods and exhibition strategies in 1960s Morocco.