Thursday, August 27, 2015
The Suriname Chronicles: Part IV
Finally in-country. After a long day of flying (four different flights), Terry and I are on the ground in Suriname to begin experiencing their culture and also start constructing our sculpture Colloquy for the Moengo Festival of Visual Arts (LINK and Facebook Page).
With my snazzy pin and some local currency, it's time to explore Paramaribo -a city of roughly 300,000 inhabitants that has a mix of Caribbean, Dutch, English, Chinese, Javanese, and Indian influences.
I am always intrigued by what aspects of American Pop culture appear in other countries/cultures and which ones don't. It turns out that McDonalds is quite popular in Paramaribo. Every time I went past a McDonalds, there was a line of cars extending out from the parking lot and in to the street.
Some street scenes that caught my eye.
More views of the streets
While Terry and I were out and about, we made a point of stopping by the Readytex Art Gallery and see artists such as Rinaldo Klas, Sri Irodikromo, George Struikelblok, Wilgo Vijfhoven, Marcel Pinas, and more! (check them out HERE) and checked out some local artists' work. We were not disappointed.
These next four works were created by Marcel Pinas. I'll talk about him more in a future post.
We also happened by a Surinamese cemetery. They inter their dead above ground and their cemeteries have a similar vibe to the ones I saw in New Orleans.
After a long hot day of exploring Paramaribo, Terry and I stopped to enjoy the cuisine and atmosphere at Bar Zuid (killer garlic fries, spot-on quattro foramggio pizza, and a delightful surf and turf).
While we were sitting there enjoying our food, we were treated to some booze-fueled reverie from the occupants of the 'Party Bus'. Bus, Bus, Magic Bus.
Some other sights.
An interesting juxtaposition to see in Paramaribo is to see is a Synagogue and a Mosque as next door neighbors. Suriname has a wide mix of peoples and religions and they have found a way to coexist and thrive.
The Saint Peter and Paul Cathedral in Paramaribo is the largest wooden structure in the Western Hemisphere. Don't believe me? Check out the Wikipedia article HERE.
The Dutch and the English have both exercised control over Suriname (formerly known as Dutch Guyana). Here are the remnants of an old building, although I don't it's original date of construction, to my untrained eye, it looks similar to another building shell that is dated back to the 1790s. Note the small bricks used in its construction.
In addition to sight-seeing, Terry and I had to secure supplies/provisions prior to traveling to Moengo. As a parting gift, I've included a panoramic shot of the hardware store where Terry and I acquired a big bucket of paint and bunch of screws. Click on it to make it larger -you won't be disappointed.
Much more Suriname to come.