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Gary Palmer - Zanzibar Paintings Featured on
Gary Palmer, Women of the Lake.

HONOLULU.- Artist Gary Palmer has recently partnered with, and online art reproduction store. General consumers and interior designers alike can view and purchase his artwork through this site. Here, we take a behind the scenes look into the creation of Palmer’s Zanzibar Series, which is currently featured on

It was a different world when artist Gary Palmer, who now resides in Los Angeles, set out for Zanzibar, an island off the coast of East Africa. It was a pre-9/11 world. At the time, he did not know just how relevant his Zanzibar series would become to many Americans, but had already anticipated its relevance to his own life experiences.

Palmer grew up in Belfast, Northern Ireland during the era of The Troubles. He has seen first hand what happens when cultures clash. Out of this exposure to conflict was born an interest in its converse, the environment and structure of cultural collage. Zanzibar’s colorful and conflicted past, exotic spices and peaceful cultural diversity beckoned to Palmer. Sketchbook and journal in hand, he embarked on his journey.

Numerous drawings and written musings filled Palmer’s time in Zanzibar. He sketched women fishing and washing clothes in the river, Maasai herdsmen with their staffs, and women walking the streets in full burqua. He journaled in an impressionist manner, thoughts sometimes overlapping, “the sun shone in its relentless repetition as Mosques rang out the praises of Allah and chants echoed through the narrow streets of Stonetown in friendly rivalry with the distant beat of African djembe drum.”

Upon arriving back in the States, Palmer began a series of paintings based on his Zanzibar experience. He worked in pigment washes, with no preconceived ideas of form. As he saw figures begin to emerge, he worked on them, shaping them in accordance with his memories. The resulting series of images is a sensual ethnography of the island. Reflecting on the project, Palmer observes that the people of Zanzibar live in peace because of their symbiotic relationship with nature, and regardless of cultural origin everyone is involved in the life and color of the village.

View Palmers work at Click on Artists & Photographers, and then Gary Palmer. Or, use this link to go directly to his page:

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