Digital Himalaya

Digital Himalaya, drying on my hi-tech drying device

The latest carving is a piece for Mark Turin of Yale. For those of you (like me) not fluent in Nepali, it reads “Digital Himalaya”–the name of a multimedia ethnographic project gathering information from the Himalayan region.

Even more unfamiliar than the script is the wood. The guys at Sterling Hardwoods saved it for me, but even they have no idea what it is. An incredible swirling grain, full of whorls and knots, like blood stirred into mercury. Anyone got any ideas what it might be? (See bottom of post.)

And speaking of Yale, the Alphabets will be there on April 3rd after a very busy March. (And the promise of a trip to Thailand in December.) See the calendar for details as they emerge.

The latest guess is that the wood is ipe (pronounced ee-pay), also known as Brazilian walnut or ironwood. That would certainly tally with the incredible hardness of this wood. Turns out that ipe has the same fireproof rating as steel and concrete!


4 Responses

  1. Claire

    Hi Tim, this is absolutely beautiful – do you mind if I post this picture to Twitter, fully credited to yourself of course? I’d like to show it on the World Oral Literature Project feed – sister project to Digital Himalaya:!/OralLiterature

    All the best


    • Tim

      Absolutely. Please be my guest. Does your project have a website? If so, I’d be happy to interlink.

  2. Claire

    Thank you! Yes World Oral Literature Project has a website, here it is:

    you might also hear about it though M Turin, who is the director. We could also put your blog on our Links page, if you’re happy with that?

  3. Tim

    I’ve added a link on my homepage to the World Oral Literature Project. Yes, please add the Endangered Alphabets to your Links page. Thanks! Tim