For a creative city with a strong independent art scene
After almost 5 decades of serving the Moroccan community, the American Language Center in Casablanca has contributed to the development of the city’s cultural and artistic ecosystem.
The American Arts Center is a non-profit space, an extension of the ALC Casablanca and as a multi-disciplinary, inclusive space, it aims to cultivate and encourage innovation and creation in arts and education. Through its diverse program of exhibitions, academic and cultural activities, the AAC aims not only to bring artists and communities together, but also to help advance cultural exchange and innovation in Morocco through dynamic programs, including artist workshops, open public events, studio classes, professional development opportunities, academic outreach and exchange and an international arts residency.
Located in the heart of the Gauthier neighborhood, a thriving cultural hub in Casablanca, the AAC with its 284 m² space features a wood-paneled 150-seat theater/cinema with mezzanine, three levels of exhibition space, individual meeting rooms wired for audio and video, and a fifth-floor panoramic space with terrace, overlooking Casablanca’s Art Deco district. ACC is a 10-minute walk from the Parc de la Ligue Arabe, with very convenient access.
We look forward to having you join us and enjoy our diverse program including workshops, films, concerts, dance, and more.
Could you walk us through the journey of the creation of the American Arts Center?
The dream for the American Arts Center came rather quickly. One day, I was walking to lunch and I saw a building for sale. I went back to my office, and called the owner. The building was zoned for six floors, and I took a paper to lunch and I drew out the plan. It was pretty much similar to what we came up with.
For years, I traveled around the world, soul-searching and doing things from the heart. I’ve learned it’s better to just go for it, and that’s the American spirit I grew up with. In a way, building an arts center is an extension of traveling and living intuitively. Luckily, the American Cultural Association is a wonderful organization that supports all these ideals that I’m talking about.
Everything happened in two weeks: we got board approval, purchased the land, developed the budget, and it was an odyssey of four years of hard work. During this time, I have had great joy in meeting people all over Casablanca and beyond to bring together the right combination of people that can pull off this incredible challenge of creating an arts and cultural center.
But now here we are, we’ve got the building, I look around and I’m thinking this is better than I could have ever imagined.
What sort of community does the American Arts Center hope to build?
Our intention is to create a space that nurtures communication between artists and educators in a unique situation, providing value to the community.
We intend to build a community where we come together here to support one another, creating things that we dream up and manifesting our own positivity to the world that we live in. By going around to many art activities in Casablanca, I met a photographer who ignited this passion of photography and it changed my life. It’s changed the course of what I’m doing and it also has changed who I meet and where I am headed.
2 Khalil Matrane (ex Balzac), Casablanca 20310
AAC is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
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