Just to explain the photos below: this week Roadside Ikebana comes to you from India. We are on a study tour focussing on the Mughal Empire in the period 1526 to 1720.
We started the tour in old Delhi. In this photo Laurie and I are at the tomb of Humayan, second of the six great Mughal emperors. There are subtle influences of the Hindu craftsmen who worked on this building, such as the characteristic four small pavilions on the top of the building. However, the aesthetic values of Islam predominate in features such as the symmetry of the building, the distinctive arches and the surmounting dome.
In the garden of the Red Fort, I was amazed to see the aerial roots of this Banyan tree.
It reminded me of the decorative surface carving I have seen in photos of Hindu temples. With such a writhing surface it is easy to understand that people should come to believe that a tree like this is inhabited by a spirit.
In the same fort are the most beautiful white marble palace buildings with extensive use of decorative inlays.
The detail above is from the bottom left hand corner shown in the previous photo.
This weeks 'ikebana' is a flower arrangement I noticed on the reception desk of our hotel in New Delhi. I was fascinated by its asymmetry, as that does not seem to be usual in this culture.
Wishing you a Happy New Year from Christopher, in Jaipur.
3rd January 2016