Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Watts Towers of India...Nek Chand
I'm big on folk art sites like the Watts Towers in Los Angeles, Bottle Village in Simi Valley, or Forestiere Underground Gardens in Fresno, so I was excited to check out Nek Chand's Rock Garden when we were at Chandigarh, India. Genius...this was my favorite place in India, even topping the Taj Majal.
Visiting the Rock Garden is like looking through a kaleidoscope for the first time. You know, the way light plays with color and prisms turn the stomach a little but in a good way. Watts Towers can cause the same reaction but Nek Chand's use of urban waste material into ingenious modern art sculpture and buildings left me shaken. Beauty formed from refuse is the ultimate recycling. Believe me, it left me almost teary.
Someone said that Mr. Chand could be found walking around the garden. I live in Los Angeles so it's inevitable that I stumble upon movie stars and such but I never had the cojones or the drive to get their autograph. But at the mention of Chand twiddling around the garden, I was determined to get his John Hancock. Too bad I didn't bump into the octogenarian artist because I would've cherished anything from him.