Manila Hemp plants (Musa textilis), Pamplemousses Gardens, Mauritius

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Watercolour of the Manila Hemp, Mauritius, Róisín Curé

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Limited edition print (200). Watercolour area 406 x 293 mm. This painting was made in 2012 on the Indian ocean island of Mauritius.

These Manila Hemp are a common sight in the Botanic Gardens in Mauritius. They produce a tough fibre which can be used for ropes, hats and the like. They stand in water and make a lovely subject. You can see a little pergola in the right of the picture. There were two lovers in there, who sat and held hands and giggled for four hours. The young man pretended to throw his girlfriend into the lake, which made her squeal, and there was a lot of gazing into each others’ eyes. I imagine they were at the Gardens to have a bit of privacy – which they had, or thought they did. I don’t think they knew I was drawing them.