The Feast of Saint Paul Gauguin

A section from one of Paul Gaugin's self portraits

Today is the Feast of artist and libertine Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin. The Invisible Basilica of Sabazius tells us, “The life of Paul Gauguin provides us with an example of a man who flouted convention and abandoned material success in order to pursue his true will; and in so doing, transformed western culture. Crowley strongly identified with Gauguin, both as a painter and as an initiate; and he formally added Gauguin’s name to the list of Saints in 1921 e.v.”

A scene from Nafea Fas Ipoipo (When Will You Marry) by Paul GauguinIt’s notable that the year of Gauguin’s birth in Paris, 1848, coincided with significant revolutionary upheaval in Europe. Gauguin himself led a rather revolutionary and controversial life, breaking free, Artsy says, “from Europe’s bourgeois shackles in a trailblazing, soul-searching quest for creative liberation in the South Seas.” In memory of Gauguin’s last days in Tahiti* and death in French Polynesia, you may wish to enjoy these two delicious Polynesian Recipes.

Papeete Tahitian Prawns
(from The Polynesian Kitchen)

  • 1 lb prawns
  • ¼ cup chopped onion
  • 2-3 tbs vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground red pepper (more to taste)
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 ½ tsp parsley, finely chopped

On the side:

Green Papaya Salad
(from Tahitian Dreams)

  • 1lb green papaya
  • 2 chili peppers, deseeded and finely sliced
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

*Tahiti may be familiar to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans for reasons other than Paul Gaugin.

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