In the heart of the Chouf area, is a not-so-little valley where Bkerzay sits overlooking the lush moutains. Inside the main building, artists gather to produce beautiful pottery pieces. This short article is a quick introduction to Bkerzay.
The site is surrounded by a forest of trees, where most types form clusters; this photo is taken from within the Olive Tree cluster.
Bkerzay is centered around an old chicken farmhouse which was turned into a pottery workshop in 2011. Here, artists work on their clay forming different objects from cups, dishes and vases, and connect with nature all at the same time.
The workshop is divided into an open sitting area at the front, an exhibition area with an outdoor space that overlooks nature, and finally the workspace at the back.
The outdoor seating area
Maha working on her pottery
There is only one full time potter at Bkerzay, Ahmad Deif -who of course is helped by an assistant. Maha Nasrallah is a part-time potter, since she is also a full-time architect and university instructor. The Bkerzay family also includes a manager, an accountant, and two waiters for the cafeteria.
There are certainly future plans for Bkerzay. The land surrounding the pottery workshop is big and beautiful. It will soon cater for guest houses available for rent, workshops and of course the natural hiking trail already available on site.
Bkerzay products are not only found in Chouf! It can be found at the AUB museum gift shop, the National Museum gift shop, Zawal and Kan Zaman.
Bkerzay also produces soap, honey, thyme, sage, lavender, and figs among other natural products. Unfortunately, these are only sold at Bkerzay.
Saturday June the 11th, Bkerzay will be hosting Une Journee Bkerzay, which is a great opportunity to get introduced to this magical place.
facebook link to event: https://www.facebook.com/events/941193612660017/