"I've always wished I had the gift, whenever it's raining, of turning the rain into sunshine by means of explanations."
From one of E. Bouqdib's notebooks, 1987
When El Arbi Bouqdib passed away on 12th March 2016, he left behind countless secrets, as yet immeasurable in their significance.
Bouqdib devoted himself to a broad spectrum of different disciplines. He worked as a mathematician to solve Fermat's last theorem, wrote computer programmes, occupied himself with the physics of thinking, attempted to approach palmistry in a scientific way, worked on magical squares and even developed a theory of colours, amongst others. He was still working right up to his last hours, decrypting the great numerical code he considered to be in the Quran.
Bouqdib was born in Morocco in 1947. He came from a Sufi family and, from his early childhood onwards, was as fascinated by science as by its border phenomena. During an interview I conducted with him for "Bublitz" in August last year, he urged me to examine all his statements and set them in "the light of the sciences and falsification".
He moved to Europe at 19, living, studying and working in different towns and countries. During these young years, he could undoubtedly have been described as flamboyant. He wrote poems and stories, went motorbike racing, was a scientist and worked alongside Albert Hoffmann, the LSD researcher and chemist. However, during the last thirty years, which he spent in Germany, he became increasingly isolationistic and reclusive.
Bublitz has been granted access to a large, unordered collection of different materials. This consists of notebooks, photos, around a dozen books written by Bouqdib, but never published, hard drives and further documents.
The task now facing us is the archiving of these and, in dialogue with the family, the development of an appropriate form of presentation to convey the person, and in particular the work, of a scientist, researcher and mystic, but also, from the perspective of art, a meticulous Outsider artist. For this reason, the planned series of exhibitions on El Arbi Bouqdib will take place under the focus of Thesaurós.