"Be mysterious, be loving and you will be happy."
Escaping to reach art. Words uttered long ago by Paul Gauguin who made the voyage by sea in 1891, and again in 1895, to Tahiti, on a creative mission, searching for something more essential; more natural; wilder than the artifice of his native France, to inspire his paintings. It was that same impulse, that same urgent desire for a connection to nature, that would spark our own pilgrimage to South India’s lush and verdant Palni Hills. A serene idyll of vast sky and dense jungle, far off the grid, where the only soundtrack was the infrequent warbling of wild birds. Where there was little more that could and should be done than paint, read, and idle in a hammock, nibbling on ripe jackfruit plucked from the tree above. Where during the day the air was moist and heavy enough to leave its damp imprint on orchids and banana leaves. And where, come nightfall, darkness would methodically descend bringing with it a palpable quiet and a broad sweep of stars. It was a place to feel whole, to feel at peace...