Tag: Girija Madhavan

Celebrating Indian Art in Japan
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Celebrating Indian Art in Japan

July 7, 2019

By Girija Madhavan My abiding memories of Japan, apart from the friendships formed there, are of the art and aesthetics of the country. My husband, A. Madhavan, was posted as Indian Ambassador to Japan in 1985. Before we left Japan in 1988, a “Festival of India” was celebrated there featuring Indian classical and folk art,…

Sakura Flower Power
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Sakura Flower Power

April 21, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Cherry blossom, “Sakura”, is the national flower of Japan. In spring, the trees begin to bloom. Japan waits for the pink and white tide, starting in the warm tip of Okinawa, to spread over the country and finally reach the heights of cold Hokkaido. Newspapers print the cherry blossom forecasts of various…

An unique experience in Gifu, Japan: Cormorant Fishing
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An unique experience in Gifu, Japan: Cormorant Fishing

March 24, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Indian diplomats enjoy a variety of cultural events when posted abroad; musical recitals, dances or ethnic programmes of the countries they are accredited to. In Japan, a different experience was to be  invited to witness an old fishing tradition in Gifu, Cormorant Fishing. My husband, A. Madhavan and I were among a…

A Glimpse of the Geisha World
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A Glimpse of the Geisha World

February 16, 2019

By Girija Madhavan Images of Mount Fuji, cherry blossoms, bullet trains or electronic devices come to mind when thinking of Japan. Less familiar is another Japanese icon: the Geisha in a kimono, with traditional hairdo, white makeup, scarlet lipstick and an aura of mystery and allure. In Japanese, the word “Gei” stands for art and…

Mysore in Brush-strokes
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Mysore in Brush-strokes

January 2, 2019

By Girija Madhavan An oil-painting of a pastoral scene in green and gold, catches a ray of the morning sun where it hangs on a wall in our home. The workers in the field seem to come alive, the foliage moves in the morning breeze in contrast to the static hay ricks in the background….

CHANOYU: The Japanese Tea Ceremony
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CHANOYU: The Japanese Tea Ceremony

November 26, 2018

By Girija Madhavan  Chanoyu,” or “The Way of Tea” is a Japanese tradition of serving tea, a ritual evolved over centuries. It is the ceremonial presentation of “Matcha” or powdered green tea by a Tea Master [man or woman] to a small group of guests, generally in specified tea houses. With Zen Buddhist origins, it…

The World of Sumo, Japanese Wrestling
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The World of Sumo, Japanese Wrestling

October 14, 2018

By Girija Madhavan Mysuru is hosting Dasara, its most important festival. Elephants are brought from jungle camps to lend their caparisoned presence to the procession. Parks display pots of salvias,  zinnias and dahlias; flower beds of cockscomb, cosmos and chrysanthemums. Traditional sports like “Kusti” [wrestling] are a feature of Dasara. Local wrestlers participate in matches,…

The Shadow of Hiroshima
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The Shadow of Hiroshima

September 2, 2018

By Girija Madhavan August 15 marks the joyful anniversary of India’s Independence in 1947 and the tragic one of the atomic bomb over Hiroshima on 6th August 1945 that changed modern warfare and its possible outcome forever. In 1945, I was seven-years-old and lived in a spacious colonial bungalow of the Mysore State Railways allotted…

The Temple of Eternal Peace: The Eihei-ji Monastery, Japan
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The Temple of Eternal Peace: The Eihei-ji Monastery, Japan

July 30, 2018

By Girija Madhavan High in the mountains above the Sea of Japan [the East Sea], amidst lofty cedars is the “Eihei-ji Monastery” or “Temple of Eternal Peace” in Japanese. It is in Fukui Prefecture. Under curving tiled roofs and in timbered halls, the “Soto” school of Zen Buddhism is practised by the monks who live…

A Mysurean Visits Buckingham Palace
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A Mysurean Visits Buckingham Palace

July 9, 2018

By Girija Madhavan There was detailed coverage on TV channels recently of the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. I could identify Priyanka Chopra in a pale pink hat and dress, Amal Clooney, George Clooney and Sir Elton John among the guests. The formal dress code for this…

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