The Nepal Now Project interviews MZN Shrawan

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The Nepal Now Project met MZN Shrawan during the opening of his Follow The Frogs exhibition at Tings Kathmandu, in Nepal.

TNNP: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given?
MZN S:The best pieces of advice I have been given is do work continuously, to just create art and do exhibitions. This advice was given by my brother, Thomas and Annette.

 

For many years we could spend hours thinking about what to say when people asked us about our opinion.

Most of the time our advises and solutions were intellectual and sometimes unclear and confusing… but they sounded good.

Being older and more experienced things are easier. We think less and follow our feelings and intuitions. Now our advises are honest and obvious – and sometimes even banal.

In turn they don’t sound as good as they did before…  like the advice we gave MZN Shrawan.

Life is sometimes strange

 

Read the whole interview on The Nepal Now Project here.

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Art Thoughts before the opening of Follow The Frogs tomorrow

 

Follow The Frogs GIF

Tomorrow e open our 15th Art@Tings exhibition at Tings Kathmandu.

This post is about why art is important when you decide to live in another culture.

In 2008 we decided to move from Copenhagen to Kathmandu.

You don’t just do that without planning. So we did a lot of research and was prepared when we arrived. And after the first 3 months we knew enough about Kathmandu to make us star up our business. We had an idea about in which part of town we wanted to start up Tings, we had friends who could tell us about how it was to live here as foreigners,  we knew  about costs of living, we had an OK insight in the Hindu culture, we knew where we could practice our Buddhism, we had become regulars at Lazimpat Gallery Cafe & Jazz Upstairs and were slowly getting something that looked like a social life.

We also read a lot of books about Nepal.

Mostly written by foreigners but also the few we could get by Nepalese writers.

One of the books we read was Manjushree Thapa’s The Tutor of History. About daily life in Kathmandu during the Maoists. It was also in 2009 we read Chirag Bangdel’s The Mist Around The Stupa that came out that year and also was about daily life – but from a completely other perspective.

Manjushree Thapa The Tutor of History

The Tutor of History by Manjushree Thapa

I think of them almost every time I walk around in Kathmandu or pass through the villages.

When I walk down Kantipath and turn right towards Asan I always look up to see the cafe on the roof top like the Tutor in Manjushree’s book does.

And yesterday when we had tea in a little tea shop in Daman I recognized all the faces around me from Manjushree’s novel where  they were sipping tea in the cafe that plays a central part in her novel – he cafe where all her key characters share their frustrations, stories, opinions etc. .

Chirag Bangdel The Mist Around The Stupa

The Mist around the Stupa by Chirag Bangdel

Or when I see a Western Union (or any of the other remittance companies) signs I can’t help wondering if all the money Nepal receives from citizens abroad are spend as intended. Like the Monkey Money from Chirag’s book.

Or when I pass by one of the many small temples in the streets I smile when I think about all the people that spend their whole life looking after them. Another situations Chirag describes so well in his collection of Short Stories: Mist Around The Stupa.

 

The reason why I mention these two writers.

After reading hundreds of Guide Books, newspapers, travel blogs etc, after spending hours talking with Nepalese and foreign friends about Nepal, and after visiting hundreds of temples, monasteries and historical sites, we believe we know everything.

But the strange thing is that all the situations we recognize and remember everyday arise from completely other sources: From Novels, poetry, music, paintings and all other aspects of Art we have enjoyed in our life in Kathmandu.

 

CROWD OF FROGS 2

CLCIK on the pix for more information about MZN Shrawan and Follow The Frogs

A few months ago we got a present – we met MZN Shrawan and his sculptures.

Living as a foreigner in Nepal for almost 7 years we have giving up finding a new Manjushree or a new Chirag. The chaos and disasters that have surrounded us – especially the last 12 months – have made us blind.

So until we met Shrawan we didn’t expect to find another Mist or another Tutor.

But after sitting with him at home surrounded by his sculptures of Frogs hearing him talking about how he got inspired by the legend of Manjushree who emptied the valley from water and how the frogs from a children’s fable rose from the dried out lake and became humans – after that we been gifted with a completely new set of stories that enrich our daily life

So now – when we we pass by Swayambu or Kirtirpur, when we read an occasional newspaper about human stupidity or when we see all the musicians passing by in the wedding parades these days we smile and think: Oh – isn’t it here Manjushree cut the whole? and Wasn’t this one of Shrawan’s frogs? 

Playing kite in festival. 6 inch each NRP 20.000

CLICK for information about all MZN Shrawan’s sculptures

 

Agree we really don’t need these stories. But its nice to have something that makes our daily life a little bit better.

So thank you Shrawan for that.

And thank you for letting us show you Frogs.

The exhibition opens tomorrow.

 

Thomas

BEFORE THE OPENING: Indirectly beer plays a role in our fascination of MZN Shrawan’s art

Instrument players.

Instrument players.

MZN Shrawan’s sculptures reminds us of the French impressionists who play an important role in our art upbringing.

Somehow MZN Shrawan’s art reminds us of the small bronze sculptures by French impressionist Degas’ Dancers, some of Gauguin’s Thaiti sculptures or even of French modernist Rodin – artists we have grown up with through Brewer Carl Jacobsen’s (founder of Carlsberg Brewery) collection at Glyptoteket in Copenhagen.

Read more about the upcoming exhibition here

Why we work with Carlsberg.

Since its start in 1902 The Carlsberg Foundation’s primary aim was to support the New Carlsberg Glyptotek, which houses the art collections that Carl and Ottilia donated to the the Danes.

Today The Carlsberg Foundation also works to promote the wider study of art and art history, helping other museums to acquire works of art and providing public artworks for squares, gardens and buildings across Denmark.

So Carlsberg plays an important role on the Danish art scene. And in our lives, too. Being Copenhageners we’ve been surrounded by the best art in the world funded by beer money.

We fund all our art activities ourselves.

Our used to.

When Carlsberg – during one our openings back in 2014 – asked us if they could help us with beers at our openings we decided to make an exception.

Of course we work with companies that appreciate art 🙂

 

MZN Shrawan about The Basket Carrier

 

Basket carrier

Basket carrier. Brass. Height. 5.5 & 9 inch.

On one side Shrawan’s sculptures are true to the Nepaleese and Buddhist traditions, cultures & legends.

On the other his art represents exactly what we have been searching for in our 7 years in Nepal – not frogs and not sculptures 😉 – but art that is completely out of the box.

Art that surprises and challenges you and yet loyal to the artist’s culture.

Thomas on MZN Shrawan’s sculptures

 

Follow updates on Facebook here.

See all the art works here.

 

 

What a fantastic opening Friday… The Opening of Creation & Compulsion by Bacco Artolini was a night to rember

People from all over the world enjoying art by Bacco Artolini from Italy, in the future Tings Lisbon owned by Danes living half time in Kathmandu, listening to Turkish music by Azat’s, drinking beers brewed in Graca, Tings Tonic from Kathmandu, Port Wine from Portugal and had food from God Knows Where but homemade in Graca.

Thank’s to Phillipo for working together with us.

And now the sun shines

Annette & Thomas

mange mennesker

 

fotograf

 

music for the artist

 

 

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T og miles

Beer Talk & Beer Tasting… Thomas (Left) ordered Stout & IPA for the lounge…

 

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