"My name is Rachid Mansouri, I have always lived in Brussels and I have a Moroccan origin. It is a nationality that I kept. When I was a child and adolescent, I drew a lot but I was not yet doing calligraphy. My style was influenced by manga
When I was little, my mother enrolled me in a Coranic school so that I could learn to write Arabic. The contact really did not happen with the teacher who over-reacted to my inability to make the right signs of this writing. It left a strong impression on me emotionally. In a way, I kept it frustrated and a sense of failure.
For a little over a year, I started drawing again and very quickly I had this desire to do calligraphy. I have reappropriated these signs that, as a child, I had an incredible trouble reproducing. I, unconsciously at first, wanted to transform this frustration into something constructive and soothing. Something that gives me pleasure and centers me; where this writing gave me anxiety before.
In my work, I use the shapes and volumes of certain motifs, certain Arabic letters to create works that are often figurative in the animal kingdom, whose coats and shapes blend so well with arabesques. I also work on geometric patterns with calligraphy which unites the angles of the geometry and the rounded shapes specific to oriental patterns. I also like to mix symbols from distant cultures but whose artistic connection is interesting.
The signs and patterns that I use do not make sentences and some are not letters but ornaments in Arabic style. I start from the principle that it is the work itself which communicates the message, the emotion and not the letters appearing there. My style is oriental with western references, like me.
I started boardcustom because I like the fact that a skateboard is a living piece of art and that the owner can do his activity on a unique piece. I grew up in the 80s and in our neighborhood skateboarding was very popular, in a way, i like to find this part of a childhood that seems almost universal."