The Autobiography of Indra B. Tamang: My Curious Years with Charles Henri Ford (Paperback)

The Autobiography of Indra B. Tamang: My Curious Years with Charles Henri Ford By Indra B. Tamang, Romy Ashby Cover Image

The Autobiography of Indra B. Tamang: My Curious Years with Charles Henri Ford (Paperback)


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A young Nepalese man's globe-spanning relationship with an American surrealist over three decades changes the course of his life, his fortune, and his sense of family and home.
In 1973, poet, photographer, collage artist, and sculptor
Charles Henri Ford, often called the father of American surrealism, convinced a
young Nepalese waiter at his hotel in Kathmandu to come work as his all-purpose
helper. Nineteen-year-old Indra Tamang, who spoke minimal English, was soon
enjoying an education and a life he could not have imagined. He quickly
graduated from cooking and running errands to attending social engagements with
Charles, to accompanying the artist on his international travels, eventually
becoming his collaborator, and more of a son than an employee.

Charles was a magnet for creative people, and during the '70s,
'80s, and '90s, Indra found himself at the center of seemingly every fantastic
little universe in New York, Paris, Crete, and Kathmandu, often as a quiet
observer taking photographs and making mental notes. There was Studio 54, Andy
Warhol's Factory, the teas that Charles would host at the Dakota, attended by
regulars such as Tennessee Williams, Quentin Crisp, Patti Smith and Henry
Geldzahler; there were special dinners at the United Nations; visits to Mary
McCarthy and Leonor Fini; and chats in the elevator with neighbors like John
and Yoko and Lauren Bacall. Charles gave Indra a second upbringing, one that
Indra absorbed with tremendous curiosity and enthusiasm. In turn, Indra brought
Charles into his family's village in Nepal, introducing him to a world that not
many Westerners were privileged to see, especially then. Indra managed to shuttle
between these two vastly different worlds, marrying and having children in
Nepal, though not revealing this to Charles for quite some years.

In 2010, Indra Tamang became the object of global
fascination after inheriting two apartments from Charles's sister, the actress
Ruth Ford. The story in the Wall Street Journal described a Nepalese "butler"
who "grew up in a mud hut" and ended up owning property in one of New York's
most famous buildings. The attention that followed inspired Indra to write this
richer and more accurate account of his life. Illustrated with nearly fifty
photographs and ephemera from the private collections of Charles and Indra,
gathered together for the first time and including some never before shown,
readers will discover that nothing about Indra's "curious years" with Charles
and his constellation of friends was ever ordinary or predictable in any

Indra Tamang was born in the Makwanpur District of SouthernNepal in 1953, and first came to New York City in 1974. He is known for hisartistic collaborations with Charles Henri Ford, and he became internationallyknown as "The Butler" who inherited a fortune from Charles Henri's sister, RuthFord. Since the passing of Ruth and Charles Henri Ford, he continues to furthertheir legacies, and manages the use of Charles Henri's published work. He hasshown his own photography and other artwork at the Mitchell Algus Gallery, theWoolworth Building, and the 292 Gallery in Lower Manhattan. Between 2008 and2010 he served as elected President of the Tamang Society of America, and remainsan active member of the Nepali community in New York. Romy Ashby is a New York-based writer, lyricist, editor, andinterviewer. She's written numerous Blondie songs with Chris Stein and DebbieHarry, and is the editor of the small interview magazine Housedeer as well as authorof the blog Walkers in the City.
Product Details ISBN: 9781885983473
ISBN-10: 1885983476
Publisher: Turtle Point Press
Publication Date: August 27th, 2024
Pages: 288
Language: English