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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Walter Van Oel

Katrinka and I visited with artist Walter Van Oel and his wife LĂ©onie yesterday at their home in Sanur. Link to page image came from.

His art is amazing - the colors - ah! There are many links to images of Walter's art and videos on YouTube.

Here is a brief video interview with Walter with some of his art and a snippet of Desmond Tutu visiting there.

I don't think I've ever been in a more impressive home. He designed it in a matter of minutes. We entered onto a vast open space with a floor of fine white gravel, almost sand. 23 meters across (meter is 3.3ft), maybe half that wide - the peak of the ceiling is 13 meters, the lower height 7 - with a large but less large space to the left. His art on the walls - large, vibrant colors.

A maybe 5 meter square of mottled volcanic rocks about a foot in diameter in the center. Three massive chandeliers made by local craftspeople hang. Four beige reclining chairs in the less large part with its 4 meter high ceiling above which is Walter's studio which opens to this area below. We listened to Bach and Gyuto Monks on a monstrous sound system. The wall the reclining chairs face is open with a jungle obscuring the wall behind, an infinity pool half in, half out. A traditional wooden Bali thatch roofed structure to the left held three meters above the garden growth by posts with a ladder to reach the seating area overlooking the ponds and pool. To the left and right of the pool giant lily pads floating in water full of red and black carp. Across is another sitting area and kitchen with a peaked traditional bamboo support roof, a seated Buddha in an ornate enclosure - museum quality. There's a cold pool maybe 4 meters square and sculpted tub for hot water in the chilled bath room. I cannot find any photos of the home on the Internet.

Walter's Dutch. He and his wife have been in Bali for sixteen years and married for twenty-three. She says she first saw him when she was seven and he, a schoolteacher, visiting her sister in the hospital with roses - he'd collided with her on a bicycle ride. She says she looked at him and "I knew he belonged to me." She served us lychee juice with soda water.

We had a wonderful time visiting. Most interesting conversation. Relaxed. Good vibes. - DC