The Guardian, 2009 (excerpt)
Running time: 3:26 minutes / HD / colour

In this diptych, Mbark, the caretaker, stands in the interior of an abandoned synagogue in Amzrou, a kasbah in southern Morocco. His recitations of the names of the Jewish families who used to live in the area act as markers to a community that no longer exists.

Camera: Patrick Andrew Boivin, Sylvia Safdie
Editing: Patrick Andrew Boivin, Sylvia Safdie
Audio mix: Patrick Andrew Boivin

         like a figure from a Rembrandt painting
         he stands illuminated by light
         veiled by dust
         bewildered, confused, surprised

         through all this we are closely observed
         in total confusion
         by Mbark, the guardian
         cradling, fondling, in constant motion
         to the rhythm of prayer
         his silver lock and key

         the insistent buzz of flies
         recall the verses of Hebrew prayer
         from generations past
         and I know
         I cannot capture lost time

Note: The subject of the Moroccan series concerns the Jewish Berbers of southern Morocco who lived there for 2500 years. The work is a poetic evocation of a place and marks the dispersion of a society from its home, its place of origin. It is the result of research, interviews and several trips that I made to southern Morocco, starting in 1981 that culminated in a series of videos, photographs and drawings.