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ALEP- a fantastic book of photography by Carlos Freire with text by Adonis, a Syrian poet. ALEP- a photographic exhibition at the Institut du Monde Arab, Paris (05-010-04). If you can not go to Alep you should buy the Carlos Freire book and see why Francesca and I have left our hearts in Alep. This delightful photographer exhibition – book shows you via black and white photos this amazing city in Syria. So those were the two major photographic exhibitions in Paris by Carlos Freire. Both a huge success. I do not know of many photographers with two major exhibitions during the same year in Paris.

ALEPPO – is a 4,500 years old city in Syria with one of the most dusty and disorganised but interesting archaeological museum, with pieces from around the area that they have saved from flooding by the dam and many pieces from Mari, an archaeological excavation on the boarder with Iraq. Aleppo is also famous for the major souk and the hotel where Byron used to stay and, of course, we asked for his room when we were there.

EBLA – TELL MARDIKH – a Bronze Age city 54KM from Aleppo. Paolo Matthie of the University of Rome was the archaeologist who discovered Ebla in 1964 and found an archive that contains 15,000 tablets in cuneiform about the royal and public life of that period. It was one of the most important archaeological discoveries in Syrian territory and an exhibition featuring it was held in Rome. When Francesca did her University thesis at the Universita di Roma La Sapienza, the President of the examining commission was the Professor Paolo Matthie of Ebla. I asked Francesca if she had told Prof. Matthie that she had been in Ebla? She replied “Mother, you are so embarrassing!”




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