NSFW/SVILOVA proudly presents PLACER, a sonic landscape by artist and filmmaker Amin Zouiten. The work is made as an audio companion to a forthcoming film set in Ouarzazate, southern Morocco. PLACER is loosely based on a reconstruction of an oral anecdote about a gold theft in 1980s Morocco.
Ouarzazate emerged as a hub between Northern and Western Africa and is located on the cusp of the Sahara Desert, in between the arid plains of the Atlas Mountains. The city functioned as a trading route for goods such as gold and spices. It later sprawled around its location as a strategic military post between southern and northern Morocco and since the 1960s, Ouarzazate has become the mise-en-scène for mostly foreign film productions. Regardless of Ouarzazate’s promises of cheap labor and 365 days of sunshine, the Hollywood system and film industry has retooled away from these on-location shoots, leaving large parts of Ouarzazate’s filmmaking industry in decline. Now, it has instead attracted new fortune seekers, by the way of the sun, and multinational investments in the form of one of the world’s largest solar energy fields in the world – Noor.
PLACER is an audio counterpoint to a behind-the-scenes. In an associative manner, it weaves together the film’s making; fading in and out of its shooting locations, stories, music, and sounds.
Amin Zouiten (*1994 in Stockholm) is an artist and filmmaker based in Malmö and Stockholm, educated at Akademie der bildenden Künste Wien and Malmö Art Academy, where he will graduate in 2023. The collective forces of moving images and films shape Zouiten’s work, often formulated around a specific place’s narrative, histories, and the people he encounters. He is currently taking part in the exhibition In the City Grows a Field at Malmö Konsthall and has previously exhibited and screened his works at Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen, Kunsthalle Charlottenborg, CPH:DOX, Arcway Nightlands Connector. His forthcoming short film produced by Plattform Produktion with support from the Swedish Film Institute, Sveriges Television, and Film i Väst will have its premiere in the spring of 2023.