Karo La…where the crystals come from wherever you want them to

This wasn’t actually the next piece I planned to make. A piece inspired by ivory shards, a trumpets made from thigh bones and chunks of coral is half made up. And rattling around my head is something inspired by the long turquoise and coral earring of the fabulous single earringed horseman who galloped down the main street of Tsingri. It is an impressive earring when you can see it on a rapidly galloping man!!! These pieces will emerge in time. One thing I am learning about creativity is the importance of patient gestation.

Regular readers, bless you, will know that I am reflecting on our journey to Tibet 20 years ago.  I am rereading my journal and all my collected Tibet books. My camera died on the trip so I don’t have many photos. It’s good that I go on in tedious great detail in my journal. (Did I mention all the fabulous browns? So many browns).

Karo La is a pass that is 5045m high. I wrote about the breathlessness,  snow capped peaks, the reds and oranges and greens…and the browns. Nomads rushed out to sell breathless travellers rock hard cheese and rock like crystals (which were more of a rocky than a crystal kind) and when one asked where they from, the answer was tailor made to where you wanted then to be from. Mt. Kailash?…then yes! They were from Kailash. Up the nearby Nojin Kangsten glacier? Yes. It is from there too.  The crystallish rocks (from a bead shop) in one of the photos are my nod to the memory.  We didn’t buy “crystals” from the nomads…too smart to be sucked in… and now I wish we had.

In my journal I wrote, The glacier tumbled right down to the road and it was this phrase that needed to be expressed!  Especially the feeling of tumbling, and I have tried to create a piece with a tumbling feeling. And one that evoked the colours (the greeny browns), the roiling angry sky of the day, and the churned, dangerous glacier.  It is a rather different piece for me. I mentioned the browns a lot but don’t often use those browny greens, or the greeny browns, in my art. And churning/tumbling/roiling doesn’t get much of a look in either so this was an adventure in different territory. Just like the trip to Tibet!