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Why I Love Nepal - Kathmandu School Murals

Kathmandu's schoolyard walls are often painted with murals depicting science, chemistry and Mickey Mouse.   Or simply happy platitudes and scenes of children frolicing or playing sports.   This series was inspired by Environment Day 2010.


The following murals are all from one street in Kathmandu, not far from Baneshwor.   All painted by students from the various schools.   Pennwood School's mural is above.

The detail in Buddha's Belly show the deep respect for nature with birds and elephants hemmed in by spewing smokestacks and a befouled stream.    Are those people in pews (unlikely) or grains of wheat on the lower right?

You are only going to see a portion, as there are about 50 separate murals on the street with a fabulous mix of environmental themes.  

This one taught me a new word.   Afforestation.   I'm guessing that this series is meant to be educational and it worked!   Thanks, Desh Tilak High School.  

The Ideal Model School has a variation on the same theme.   International relations are highlighted with the flags of Canada, Switzerland, Nepal and Uruguay!   The choice of Uruguay intrigues me, to say the least.   Themes of dark and light, the dove of peace and angels are all included.

Styles and ability vary greatly down the street.   This Dali-esque portrait of a fragile egg catches the waning sunlight.  

A budding cartoonist and satirist.    The Earth is Geography - Do Not Make it History.   Brilliant!

I like the idea here that the earth and all its continents are joined by a big umbilical cord.   The broken glass bottles that crown the wall are a nice touch, as are the dusty plants that struggle to cover the mural.    Please notice how beautifully the women dress in Nepal.  

Most of Asia and South Asia and their animals are here in this mural.   The penquins and pandas, octopus and sharks are not native.   What is the panda doing in Australia?   The scale of this painting reminds me of the famous New Yorker covers by Saul Steinberg looking west to the left coast.   Except the perspective is not clear.   Maybe the orb is part of a crystal ball and it is a psychic gypsy woman's hands that hover as she reads the future.   You think they meant to spell their signature Banksy instead of BNKS A?

Two Nepali school children quickly pass by this menagerie of animals who are looking off into the black skies and deforested mountains.  

That's it for today.   Stay tuned for more folk art from Nepali artists.  

I am leaving shortly for the 9th Danger Dog trip to Nepal.   If you would like to order, please send in a photo of your pet and I will give it to 3 struggling artists, paying all 3 fair trade wages, giving you a choice of 3 custom paintings and 3 people work.   I do not accept money unless you like one of the three and all artists are paid in any case.

Your metal sign will be painted with synthetic enamel and you can have it say anything you'd like.   Above are the 3 portraits of Jack Frost by Hari Prasad, Amar Shrestha and Sabala. 

Catch the NepalDog Channel on YouTube to see more like Jack Frost.    You might like the Nepali Folk Music too.

More about the Nepal Art Dog Project:

Danger Dogs from Nepal is a Fair Trade art project which promotes the dying art of signboards in Nepal.

Danger Dogs are handpainted signs painted on (often recycled) metal in Nepal.   Each piece is approximately one foot square (though some artists insist on different sizes) using synthetic enamel.   They can be hung indoors or out.

This hand-painted art form is fast disappearing in Kathmandu, as it already has in most parts of the world.   I pay fair trade wages, the artists get to paint again, pet lovers get a choice of three paintings for each commission, three people get work, and I get to help Nepali artists make a living.   Everybody is happy.   Rescue dogs from America get to rescue artists from Nepal!

I am now accepting custom orders for the next Danger Dog trip to Nepal sometime in spring 2011.     You tell me what you would like it to say!

Your satisfaction is guaranteed as I accept no money up front.   All artists get paid in any case.   You pay only if you like one  (or more) of the portraits of your pet.

Please contact me if you need a special present, as after making over 1700 of these art pieces I have just about every breed imaginable.   Please write me at with any requests or questions. 

Micro-finance through art patronage.  

Give someone you love a portrait of someone they love - and support art from the Himalayas -- Dogmandu.

 Visit the website.





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