The Big Durian: a megalopolises

I have to confess I have learnt two new words today: durian which is a fruit and megalopolises which is a very large city.  Both these words are used to describe Jakarta, the 14th largest city in South East Asia by population.  Why a Big Durian? Because (apparently) like the fruit the city stinks and repulses first time visitors just as the fruit repulses first time eaters. You either love it or hate it, like the city.

Here is the fruit: 

Here is the city: 


But, like the fruit, Jakarta is a city where you have to peel away the layers and there are parts, like the Old Town, which have an air of something else about them.


This next watercolour shows something different: perhaps in the old town or just a backstreet somewhere as the frenetic life of the city seems far away.  It is signed but the signature is illegible.  There is the address of the gallery in which it was bought on the back but I wasn’t able to find a website for it so it might no longer exist.  In any case I think this is a very good watercolour and I suspect it was bought by someone who visited Jakarta or perhaps even lived there.



Florence: an open air museum

Florence, the jewel in the crown of Tuscany, Italy.  The iconic skyline, dominated by the Duomo, is immediately recognisable.  The Appennine Mountains rise up behind it and the River Arno runs through it, 

It was the birthplace of the Renaissance and any artist working there is following in the footsteps of Michelangelo, Leonardo and Dante to name but three.  One such artist is Vittoria Scaffidi who can be found outside the walls of the Pitti Palace selling her paintings.  Here she is: 

And here is one of her paintings:

She has added a panel to her watercolour to,show Florence in the rain with a number of umbrellas flying around.  

It needs a new mount but apart from that the colours are still very vibrant and I think anyone who knows Florence would like it.  I wonder what it cost and why it has been cast aside.  

The next parish to America

is the village of Dun Chaoin on the Dingle Peninsula in South West Ireland, or so the locals say.  The Dingle Peninsula, or Corca Dhuibhne, stretches for 30 miles into the Atlantic Ocean from Couny Kerry on the  West coast of Ireland.  It is dominated by a range of mountains with steep cliffs and sandy beaches.  It is the most western point of Ireland and possibly Europe.  It does look stunningly beautiful and unspoilt.

Those of a certain age might remember the film Ryan’s Daughter which was filmed there.

My next painting, an original watercolour, is by Margaret C Middleton, dated 1998. It is entitled ‘The Dingle Peninsula, W. Ireland’ and its original selling price was ¬£20.  Margaret’s address, also on the back, is in Abingdon in Oxfordshire.

  I think she has captured something of the timeless beauty of the place.