The city of Gods

“This is the city of Gods. I am Shiva.” “I am Vishnu. We stay in the City of Gods. The trees guard us.” “I am Brahma. We are the Four Gods facing east, north, west, and south in the City of Gods.” “I was born last. I am Gautama. We sit forever on top of…

Lakshmi

  “Garnier, have you seen Lakshmi?” “No, Doudart,” I said. “I haven’t. Who is Lakshmi?” “How can you possibly not have seen her?” Doudart asked. “She walks the compound all night. The most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen!” “Doudart, my friend, Lakshmi is an Indian name. We’re in China, in Yunnan. Don’t you remember? This…

A morning walk, Angkor

Angkor Vat means, in Khmer: “the capital that became a Buddhist monastery”. The temples of Angkor are a blend between Hinduism and Buddhism. The faces carved out everywhere? I am not sure whether they represent Brahma or Buddha. Or one then the other. A good example of Asian capacity of “Fusion”. The jungle reclaims the…

Presentation. Art. World. Beauty

A look at tango. (Una mirada al tango). By Ernesto the Monkey Cabral, 1926. We’ve seen Cabral before. One of the great Mexican illustrators of the 20th century. A master of line and elegance… Think how daring – and codified – Tango was in 1926… Monet’s garden at Giverny during Emil Bührle’s visit in 1951.…

Pot-pourri one and sixty

Dolores del Río, 1938, by Diego Rivera, at the artist’s house in Coyocán, Mexico city. Dolores del Río (1905-1983) was one of the major actresses of the Golden age of the Mexican cinema and a strong “player” in Hollywood too. There will be more soon on Diego Rivera.   Death by Evelia Evelia, Mexico, 2019.…

My Lord Buddha and the elephant

“What is your name, my son?” “My name is Philip, my Lord. Man calls me Tembo, the elephant.” “Where do you come from, my son Philip? You do not look like your cousins from here.” “I was born in Tsavo my Lord Buddha. In what Man calls Africa. My family was born here for thousands…

A morning walk, Bangkok

Security guard at the Palace. The pay is good but the uniform heavy. Glamour. Commuting. Bangkok art and culture museum.   War. 1914. 1939. The centre has very fine modern art and had an expo with photos of the late King Bhumibol, who was a keen photographer. The delicacy of Wat Arun temple. The Jim…

In search of the lost Buddha

Siem Reap, June 23, 1866. “Garnier is seriously ill. Caught the fevers again. Not doing too good myself. It has taken us longer than expected from Phnomh-Penh. The river, the jungle, the unbearable heat… are taking their toll on the expedition. Carné and Delaporte seem to be all right. They take this expedition as an…

Dreaming of Asia

Stolen kiss. Grandson G. at the Peranakan Museum, Singapore, 2017. Asia eluded me. I was born in the Far East but left too young to really remember. I was then raised in Africa. Spent the rest of my life between Europe and the Americas. And I’m sorry to say, the evolution of Africa and Latin…