Author – Krish V Krishnan
Publisher – Inkhorn Publishing India
Pages – 208
Price - Rs. 1980
If art and history fascinates you as much as it does me, the sight of Acropolis on the cover will hold you for few minutes. There it is, in its full glory enticing readers to discover many more treasures hidden inside the book, in pen and paint.
I must confess, the main reason why I picked up this book was my outdoor painting classes. Each morning, we would sit outside in the park and try to capture the tree in front of us in varied mediums - first pencil, then watercolour. So lost I would be in the detailing that often, these sessions left me with neck pain sitting still in one position, trying to capture the particular shade, before sun decided to play spoilsport by shifting it's position!
In the process I learnt that art is the best way to immortalise any subject in our heart. "We can take a picture" you may say. But will it be able to keep afresh the perspective in your mind, long after? Will you be able to make that very emotion timeless? The answer is a No. Three years later, I still remember each crack, each crevice and the branch to the T, for I captured them in my heart through watercolour!
And that's what fascinated me about this unique book. You may have read travelogues with fascinating travel stories; picture books that transport us to places in no time; art books showcasing masterpieces. But have you ever witnessed something that is an amalgamation of these all? This is the very factor that makes this book stand apart from your regular travel books.
The author has captured thirty years of travel to arcane centres of worship, that don't feature in a regular tourist's itinerary. The painstaking efforts and determination is evident as we read about near escapes, adventures and uncomfortable situations. From being suspected of kidnapping his own son across the Israel-Jordan border, to being grilled by a suspicious Sri Lankan immigration officer, nothing could deter Krish's canvass and brushes.
No travelogue is incomplete without references to culture and people. However, the book offers us an artist's impression of the same, keeping us engrossed in imagination.
Each work of art captures the very essence of the place. You will feel the goosebumps looking at "Victim of a sacrifice" from Belize, shouting of Mayan ruthlessness; feel the heat looking at to the fury of vent at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park; feel the sound of sacred chants in your ears looking at Manikarna Ghat in watercolour; witness the embodiment of resilience at Bethlehem; marvel at the magnificent world of Pharaohs at Giza; feel the legends come alive at Greece!
While reading the book, the reader often finds himself lost in admiring the artwork and has to be quickly reminded that it is a travel book.
The author has tastefully explained every location, every masterpiece. This is not just a book to be read. This is an experience to be felt.
A must read!
Why it is a thumbs up from me -
- There is detailed explanation of artwork and choice of media, much to an art lover's delight.
- Travel tips have been provided at the end of each chapter
- The choice of offbeat locations that speak of civilisations make the book stand apart.
- Passion flows in words, with unique and vivid descriptions.
- The author's meticulous research reflects in the detailed background for each place, which helps to transport us into that very era, imagining life in that very setting.
- Do I have to still say, I am in awe of all the Artwork in the book!
About the author
An artist and a traveller, Krish focuses on landscapes and ancient monuments, using a variety of techniques, including scratchboards, watercolours, and acrylic mediums. Over the last thirty years, he has participated in several group and solo exhibitions and several of his artwork have won art awards. An alumnus of IIT and Harvard Business School, Krish heads a global outfit, that sees him shifting gears between Thai, Hindi, Thinglish, Hinglish and English.
Having lived in or visited over 60 countries and published over 500 articles on travel and humour in various newspapers across the world, this is Krish's first book.
This review is for WritersMelon.