THE ENCHANTED WORLD OF DAR EL SADAKA
A former fortified farm, Dar El Sadaka has undergone various metamorphoses under the aegis of French visual artist Jean-François Fourtou who took up residence there in 2000, evolving through the continuous development of his work. ‘Sadaka’ means ‘the one who seeks’ in Sanskrit and ‘house of friendship’ in Arabic, two definitions that are in harmony with his philosophy.
The villa was initially a residence for artists, then the headquarters of a humanitarian foundation helping women and children in precarious living conditions in the region of Marrakech. Dar El Sadaka also hosted meditation retreats.
In collaboration with interior designer Philippe Forrestier, the Villa and the Riad were transformed into a guesthouse, a haven of luxury and comfort that is both unique and fantastic.
Disturbingly realistic yet friendly animal sculptures, created on different scales, are dotted throughout Dar El Sadaka. Outside guests are welcomed by a giant sheep standing beside the swimming pool. Orang-utans are hanging from the living room chandeliers and a larger than life-size giraffe leans over the dining room table.
Within the estate, Jean-François Fourtou’s park of monumental artworks offers visitors a unique experimental journey
– through a mud house in ruins turned into an enormous ‘Ant-Nest’, an upside-down house ‘Fallen from the Sky’ where the floors, ceilings and walls all lean, a vegetable garden populated by little ‘Nanitos’ with squash heads, ‘The House of the Maxitos’ where furniture and objects from the past are out of proportion, and an oversized, untidy little boy’s bedroom ‘Range ta chambre !’ –
like an invitation from the artist to lose one’s reassuring adult bearings for a moment and step again into the magical world of childhood.
Human beings are their own homes and to be happy, peace and harmony must reign within them. Based on these principles, Jean-François Fourtou and Philippe Forrestier have completely redesigned every space at Dar El Sadaka.
Each room is a creation that explores the theme of an animal sculpture, where earthen architecture, traditional materials, sleek furniture and local craftsmanship come together.
« Dar El Sadaka is a truly unique and magical property, where everything is taken care of to ensure a feeling of well-being and comfort. My sculptures fill the spaces in unusual ways, distorting our relationship with time and space. In this enchanted yet refined universe, the mind is liberated, enabling one to fully enjoy the present moment and experience an unforgettable stay with family and friends. »