The Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu said that without leaving one’s home, one may see the entire world. He also said that the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
I prefer the journey of a thousand miles to see the world, but recent events at the Hauser Gallery have caused me to rethink Lao Tzu’s words.
Marisa, our talented young employee went to Peru. Carol Link, a friend and adviser to the gallery (a cultural anthropologist whose knowledge of the world is invaluable to us) just came back from Indonesia, and I am just back from Spain.
We each had stories to tell and some interesting works of art to show (Carol’s journey was especially fruitful). But while we were away, Rose, the owner of the gallery, without leaving her front door had acquired things from all over the world.
There were exotic leather bracelets from Latvia, Thai scultpures, an 8th century marble Shiva head and a 12th century Buddha of sandstone from India, vintage silk fabric from Japan and more.
Not everything came by mail. One of the West African traders had come by with masks and scultures from the Congo and Cameroon.
The gallery has connections all over the world. When I go to the post office I am never sure what country’s goods will be in my hands.
Rose has always wanted to travel the world but working from an early age, school, then graduate school, the raising of a beautiful family and an impressive career as a writer have taken up a bit of her time. Subconsciously or consciously she has compensated for not yet getting to these places by bringing these places to her.
This “compensation” has resulted in an incredible gallery of ethnic art. My father, a self made business man always said that sales are important, but it is the buyer and their connections which make or break the whole thing.
I have seen the world, while the world has come to see the gallery.