Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Departures Magazine and the Maharajas

If you have an American Express Black or Platinum card you are supposed to be receiving this magazine. Then you can enjoy reading my artist interview, "The Arts Inspired by India" in this beautiful issue of India. I was interviewed because they knew that I loved India and my art had been influenced by its culture. It's funny, when American Express came up with the Black Card some years ago, the first person around me to get it was a friend of mine in NYC who was a Maharaja's son. I remember him telling me, "I can buy a jaguar with this card," and he probably did.


So when I went to India again some years ago my Maharaja friend's parents, the maharaja, invited me to his beautiful home in Delhi. I always stay at the Imperial Hotel in Delhi because I absolutely love that hotel. It is like staying in a museum! They have thousands of art within the hotel, and I just love looking at every piece in every corner of the beautiful hotel. When his mother came to pick me up at the hotel, she told me that her husband's ancestors, the maharajas' portraits were displayed at the hotel. She was kind enough to show me those portraits there. The photo above is my friend's grand father.


And this is his great-grand father Maharaja. そしてこちらが曾おじいさん。

Then this one... is Runjeet Singh. He was the first Maharaja of the Sikh Empire. Since I was a child I have always been fascinated by the maharajas. We had a huge disco called, Maharaja in Tokyo during the 80's, but that is not why. Honestly, I don't know why, but when I saw the amazingly stunning jewelries designed by Cartier for the maharajas I felt something very familiar and nostalgic. You can call me a fool, but hey, who knows? Perhaps I was one of them in the past! lol


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