Meet the Maker: Mina Abouzahra
‘My name is Mina Abouzahra. My mother came to the Netherlands when she was pregnant with me and only a week later I was born in Enschede. As a child two things were always very important to me: my mom’s kitchen and the interior and decoration of my room. I spent a lot of time in the kitchen helping my mother prepare food. That is where I discovered that I was good at making; kneading bread was peanuts and I seemed to have very skillful hands. The kitchen was my mother’s world and I saw how she cooked the best food for us with a lot of love, attention and dedication. I was also very excited about redecorating my room over and over. At a certain point I really wanted this colorful wallpaper, but we did not have the money for that. In our neighborhood were many older people who I asked for stuff that I could sell. This is how I started organizing my own little flea markets. The funny thing was that people would often let me in their houses, so I could also have a look at Dutch interiors. This way I gained a lot of inspiration from a world that wasn’t my own.’
What can Crafts Council do for you?
’Too many Moroccan parents have a very negative view on craftsmanship, as in Morocco it is still very much related to poverty and poor working conditions. They want their children to have a ‘clean’ job. First and foremost they want their children to become lawyers of doctors, even though so many of these children are very skilled in working with their hands. I think we have to show that with working with your hand you can also make good money and that it is a respected profession as well for which a lot of talent is required.’
More of this entry is available in Dutch.