Artistic destinations: Brushstrokes of the Pacific

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In the heart of the South Pacific, amid the turquoise waters and emerald-green islands of Fiji, there existed a world far removed from 'everything that is artificial and conventional' of urban life. It was here that I sought inspiration beyond the confines of my studio.

My journey began with a quest for authenticity, a desire to immerse myself in cultures untouched by the modern world. I embarked on an adventure to explore the remote island villages of Fiji, where traditions were woven into the very fabric of daily life.

My first encounter was with the village of Yageta, nestled amidst rolling hills and swaying palm trees. I was captivated by the simplicity and purity of life here. As I delved deeper into the Fijian way of life, I found himself welcomed with open arms by the villagers. They shared stories of their ancestors, tales of their cultural practices and traditions. In the village of Nacula, I witnessed a ceremony celebrating the bond between man and nature. I observed as villagers offered Kava, the traditional Fijian welcome ritual, a gesture of drinking Kava signifies the highest respect and deepest reverence for the Chief, their people, and the land ('vanua') from which they hail. The completion of the kava ceremony marks the occasion when the visitor and the visited become one people, striving for the same purpose.

As my time in Fiji drew to a close, I carried with me not only everlasting and inspiring memories, but also as Paul Gauguin put it in Noa Noa, the illustrated journal he began on his first trip in the Pacific: “Little by little, step by step, civilization is peeling away.” 

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