Rabat – A promotional banner for Rabat’s Art Biennial, an international art exhibition that will take place once every two years starting this year, has drawn attention for the wrong reasons.
The banner is displayed on the facade of Mohammed VI Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art and is written in Arabic.
It is the literal translation of another banner in English saying “As long as following our rules is more important than following our hearts, I will be a feminist.” Unfortunately, that’s not what the corresponding banner says in Arabic.
The mishap has not gone unnoticed by the Moroccan public. The linguistic error was the result of a literal translation from English to Arabic.
Museum director Abdelaziz Idrissi told Morocco World the “banner” displayed at the facade of the museum is an artwork by Katharina Cibulka from Austria.
“We cannot interfere in the artist’s work, that is why it was displayed as such,” he said.
For the museum director, there has been no serious linguistic problems. “It could be better if the word feminist was translated differently in the Arabic version.”
A communication official at Morocco’s National Museum Foundation (FNM) told MWN that organizers are well aware of the mistakes contained in the banner, and that they are working on fixing it.
The official could not comment on the reasons why the banner was publicly displayed before the corrections.
FNM is the organization responsible for managing the majority of Moroccan museums. They are also the organizers of Rabat’s Biennial , taking place from September 24 to December 18, 2019.
Rabat’s Biennial is an international exhibition dedicated entirely to female artists. It is set in different cultural sites across Rabat.
This year, 63 artists from 27 countries and different disciplines are exhibiting their works at the event. The theme of this first edition of the biennale is “An Instant before the World.”
The public display of linguistic mistakes comes only one week after a nameplate at Casablanca airport caused controversy.
The nameplate was riddled with grammatical and lexical mistakes and it sparked a public uproar, with critics asking how the airport personnel missed such a blunder.
The nameplate, which appears to be advertising the newly announced initiative to ease traffic at the Casablanca-based airport, read: “Exit Moroccan passports stamped.” The writing came alongside its Arabic version.
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