Unit (2004) Abderrahim Chawki
Since 2001, the Mevlana Mosque has been located in Rotterdam West. The building has a large dome roof and two 42 meter high minarets. There is a square in front of the entrance with a black and red motif. Since 2004, there is a stone sculpture on a square base at the head of this square. The sculpture has the title Unit and was made by sculptor Abderrahim Chawki. He makes images based on Arabic script: he converts characters into images. For example, he investigates the relationship between language and image, and the relationship between earth and his native Moroccan language. As a stonemason, he makes images for public space, combining traditions of Eastern calligraphy with Western art. The image thus embodies the bridge between cultures and strives for unity.
The Utrecht-based sculptor Abderrahim Chawki (Casablanca, Morocco, 1951) is active throughout the Netherlands in creating images in public spaces, inspired by Arabic characters. He has been living in Utrecht since 1970, where he studied Monumental Design at the Academy of Visual Arts. He then went on to study as a sculptor. He works in stone, a craft that is not very common in the Netherlands. In his work he establishes a relationship between his native language and image.