You know how every country has its ultra-common lastname, that half the population seems to have? The cliches like Smith in the Anglophone world, Nguyen in Vietnam, Lee in China, Jansen in the Netherlands or Rodriguez among Hispanics.

Well, despite being a South American country, Bolivia is a bit different in this respect (all though Rodriguez is still up there in the top 5 somewhere). The indigenous population is a decisive factor here, making names like Quispe, Choque and Mamani extremely common as well.

bolivia_facts_art_artists_famous_people_roberto_mamani_mamaniOne particular man called Roberto, presumably with both a mother and a father with the last name Mamani, is who I want to introduce to you today. Roberto is an artist, best known as Mamani Mamani.

His art is colorful, fun and childlike, but at the same time so very complicated it might make your head hurt. I go back and forth trying to decide if I would want to hang a (replica of) a painting of his in my home some day and right now my answer would be a full hearted yes.

Take this one, for example:


I can only imagine what a piece like this must look like up close, without being handicapped by pixels or color muddling digital screens.

It’s a man, it’s a mountain. It’s the flora, the fauna and the cultural essence of the Bolivian highlands; all in one. The colors clash with each other in perfect harmony. It captivates me so that I can’t help but embark on an instant daydream, up that winding road straight to its core.

It’s actually quite strange as anybody who’s been to the Andes knows that the highlands are not exactly the most colorful places on earth. At the same time, these depictions feel completely accurate to me.


Silly songs somebody sung

Inspired by this blog I read today, I started scrolling through my internal harddrive to come up with some song that makes me giggle or frown or think anything that would be worth sharing here.

I listened to some of my favorite songs but other than me bobbing my head along, nothing happened.

However, there are some songs that really move me. They move my hand straight to the off-switch, to be precise.

One of the singers that held the record for annoying yet catchy songs, for a while was Bruno Mars. I can name three songs out of the top of my head that really make me cringe:

– Marry you.
This is such a douchebag song. He sings about wanting to do something stupid and then comes up with the oh so romantic proposal. “I think I wanna marry you” YOU THINK?? And not because you love me or find me extremely funny or hot or smart, but just because you’re bored and/or drunk?? Booooo!

– Lazy song.
This song should really totally appeal to me, as I have perfected the art of doing nothing imo. But for some reason this song gets on my nerves so intensely that I almost lost control over a car trying to get rid of it. I would prefer driving myself off a cliff than having to listen to his lame ass attitude. (luckily Holland is as flat as a nickel)

– Billionaire.
Maybe it’s just the combination of being a lazy ass douchebag that might consider marrying you on a slow night and then this…. And the fact that it gets stuck in my head and I sometimes accidentally sing along to it doesn’t make it OK, Bruno!

I must admit his next album did a lot of good for his position on my internal popularity charts and I actually think he’s pretty cool now… But those three songs…. *shiver*

Grenade used to be up there as well, but it moved over to the thumbs-up-list as my initial annoyance with him faded. I still think it’s a pretty bad idea to catch a grenade though, no matter how cool that chick is…

Romantic, you say? I disagree. One of the most romantic song ever is this one, if you ask me:

And I don’t wanna steal your freedom
I don’t wanna change your mind
I don’t have to make you love me
I just want to take your time

His vulnerability is so endearing and even if it’s just a pick up line, I would totally fall for it… What do you think?