When Romio was a wee lad of five years two Buddhist monks came to visit him at his home in Katmandu. He was informed that he was the reincarnation of Arniko, the master Tibetan T’angka painter and that he would open a school of painting. Before departing the monks left him with the art materials needed to begin his lifelong devotional work.
In person Romio is an extremely centered, loving soul who greets one with a strong bear hug. At the evening event many of his original T’angka paintings, some which had been at the residence of the Dalai Lama, were on display. He paints in the old tradition of illuminators, utilizing ground precious pigments and gold. Each stroke of these paintings in filled with intention.
The Valentine festivities began with the arrival of many cherished and beloved friends followed by a fantastic dinner facilitated by the Goddess of the house, Teresita. Tables had been arranged through out the open kitchen, dining and family areas to accommodate all the guests. I sat at a table with Teresitas father, who on discovering I was a botanical perfumer, went and unearthed a stash of Damiana Orange Liquor from Mexico. Damiana is a shrub native to California and Mexico with fragrant yellow flowers. It has gained recognition mostly due to its aphrodisiac properties.
After dinner, we assembled in the grand living room for a talk and presentation by Romio. He began by speaking of the Divine God and Goddess that lies within each of us. With the help of two assistants from the audience large paintings on linen were unrolled and shared with us. These illuminated works are truly divine. The piece titled “One Thousand Buddhas” was particularly splendid and sold a few days ago to a very fortunate recipient.
When Romio had fully enchanted us all with his stunning visual display the singer songwriter from the 60’s, Donovan, performed three songs for us with his dandy friend Kelly, a bright green colored guitar.
Thus, with our hearts open, our bellies full and our visual and auditory senses satiated we made our way back to our abode.
Currently Greg and Romio are collaborating on a piece together. It’s been terrific to witness the process and I promise to bring you more details, including visuals soon.
The image above is from the book cover featuring Romios work, The Goddesses of the Celestial Gallery.