So as promised, I did a little more research on Philippe Xerri. Twelve years ago, Xerri, who worked in the fashion industry in Paris, went to Tunisia for a quick visit to source fabrics for a client. He fell in love with Tunisia while he was there, and never left. He became very helpful to Tunisian craftsmen in helping them get their wares to France to be sold, and two years ago started a line of furniture called “Rock the Kasbah,” which features handmade local furniture upholstered in antique kilms. These pictures are of one of two homes that Xerri owns in Tunisia, this one being in Tunis, the capital, near the city’s largest souk.
This home is quite typical of a Tunisian courtyard house, which although common in most Muslim regions, is most prevalent in North African countries, such as Tunisia, Algieria, and Morocco. The central courtyard, called wast ed dar or center of the house, was used for a variety of different things such as the preparation of food, outdoor living space, and laundry. At Xerri’s house, it seems that not much has changed!
Most of these courtyard houses date to the 19th century, and most are still lived in by some of the poorer families within the cities. However, looking at the restoration that Xerri performed here, it is obvious that these houses are still very adaptable to modern living, and quite chic!
In the photo above, you can see two table lamps from the “Rock the Kasbah” collection. This beautifully restored courtyard house in Tunis can also be rented! See https://www.airbnb.fr/rooms/717507 for details. For more information on Philippe Xerri, please visit pxrtk.com, and for more information on courtyard housing, I suggest Courtyard Housing: Past, Present, and Future available on Amazon.
Photos courtesy of Deco Mag UK & information courtesy of Courtyard Housing: Past Present and Future