14 July 2007

Raza and the Tour Lascaris

Last night the village of Gorbio was choc-a-bloc with people for the inauguration of the restored Tour Lascaris, originally built betwewen the XII and XIV centuries. Part of the ancient Chateau, it has undergone extensive renovation having been pretty much derelict for years. This is something totally fabulous for the village as it now has a dedicated space to display art and superb it is too.

In the photograph you see, sitting, the well-known Indian artist Raza, who has lived in Gorbio for thirty years. You can read more about him, one of India's most famous artists, at this link. Sadly, Raza's wife, herself a brilliant artist, died a few year's ago and many emotional tributes were paid to her last night. Last night, we heard that Raza, now 85, has generously donated many of his paintings and also some of his beautiful collection of Indian sculpture to the commune of Gorbio. These are displayed in this first exhibition to be held in the Tour Lascaris. To the right in the photograph, and about to grab the microphone, is our mayor, Monsieur Michel Isnard, himself an artist and art teacher, and to the left is the mayor of Roqubrune-cap-Martin, Monsieur Patrick Cesari. Dignitaries were there representing Prince Albert of Monaco and the Indian ambassador to France was there too.

Below you see Raza ascending the staircase to the first floor of the exhibition. There is also an entrance below. Later, from my friend's house above the village I looked across to the Tour and saw the balcony - see the third photo - full of celebrating villagers.

The beautiful cross, by the way, was a gift made by two artisans of the village who work in wrought iron.


  1. Anonymous14 July, 2007

    This is an incredibly beautiful display of a situation most of us will seldom get to see. And it is not about a politician or a religious figure but about art and artists. Isn't that stunning? I think I read the words with this post three times and savored them one after another.

    Thanks, Jilly, for your visits and for your comments. Patty and I appreciate it very much.

    Abraham Lincoln

  2. a great artist and a wonderful human being! thanks for sharing.

  3. Wow! To restore a building that old! I love the wrought-iron cross.

  4. That is a beautifl cross.

  5. A very satisfying occasion for your beautiful town, and a superb cross.
    Joyeux 14 Juillet.

  6. Interesting story with excellent photos. Your town is really beautiful.

  7. A wonderful tribute. I couldn't take my eyes off the beautiful cloth of his garments....shot silk?

  8. The "artist" is celebrated...it's always good to read about those who inspire others to be creative. As several have noted, the cross is certainly magnificent. Thanks for the narrative. Happy Bastille Day!

  9. a great riport of an event! And the place seems to be amazing.

    happy july 14!

  10. Anonymous15 July, 2007

    The cross is beautiful ... When the top photo first appeared I thought the mayor was a singer about to perform ... Bravo to all supporters of the arts.

  11. Silk yes, certainly Sally!
    Great post Jilly, photos and text.

  12. What better way to celebrate the spirit of Art than this...this is an incredible story perfectly done through your words & wonderful photos...Thanks for sharing!


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