“[Jardin Majorelle], the Majorelle Garden, in Marrakech is one of the most visited places in Morocco. It took the French painter Jacques Majorelle (1886-1962) forty years to create, with passion, this enchanting place, today in the heart of the red city. In its shaded alleys, one strolls among the trees and exotic plants whose origin makes one dream, with running waterways filled with refreshing murmurs and ponds filled with water lilies and lotus; you can hear in the fragrant air here and there the rustle of the leaves and the chirping of the many birds that come to take refuge there. Stop at a bend in front of a building with Moorish charm or Art Deco style, surprisingly painted with very bright primary colors dominated by the intense blue seen in the Atlas by the artist [“Majorelle Blue”]. One is soothed and bewitched by the harmony of this luxuriant and alive picture where the senses are delicately solicited to offer a magic walk, out of the city so animated yet so close, in the enclosure protected by the high walls of ground, out of time.” — http://www.jardinmajorelle.com
“Majorelle blue” – a strong, intense cobalt blue color — was introduced by Jacques Majorelle in 1937 in his garden and on the walls of his studio. In the garden, the color was painted onto the gates, the pergolas, the ceramic jars and various buildings – an unusually bold and generously colored primary blue.
Jacques Majorelle (1886-1962) was a French orientalist painter and son of the famous Art Nouveau furniture designer, Louis Majorelle. He arrived in Morocco in 1917, invited by the French Resident-General, Marshal Lyautey. Majorelle was seduced by Marrakesh. In 1923, he decided to live there, purchasing a vast palm grove that would become the Jardin Majorelle as we know today.
In 1931, he commissioned the architect, Paul Sinoir, to build an artist’s studio in the Art Deco style; it’s walls were painted in “Majorelle Blue“. Around it, he designed a garden, a living work of art composed of exotic plants and rare species collected during his worldwide travels. He opened his garden to the public in 1947, but after his death in 1962, it fell into abandon.
In 1980, Pierre Bergé and Yves Saint Laurent acquired the Jardin Majorelle, saving it from real estate developers. Since then, the garden has been restored, and many new plants have been added. A museum dedicated to Berber culture was opened and the painter’s studio. Today the Jardin Majorelle also includes a bookstore, café and boutique.
After the death of Yves Saint Laurent in 2008, Pierre Bergé donated the Jardin Majorelle to the foundation Pierre Bergé – Yves Saint Laurent. The Foundation Jardin Majorelle was established at this time. A memorial to the French fashion designer was built in the garden. — courtesy Foundation Jardin Majorelle
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