That Everyone is Wrong about Other Countries

On Art and Aesthetics

Serge Horta

In March 2015, I read a wonderful article on The Atlantic called “For a More Creative Brain, Travel” with the subtitle “How international experiences can open the mind to new ways of thinking” – by Brent Crane, a journalist and photographer based in Massachusetts. There was a sentence in there from Mark Twain (1835-1910) that stuck – “travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness” – taken from the great American writer’s travelogue The Innocents Abroad (1869). Similarly, British writer Aldous Huxley (1894-1963) – famous for his dystopian masterpiece Brave New World (1932) – is supposed to have observed, “To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.” He wrote a whole book called Along the Road: Notes and Essays of a Tourist.

Huxley’s words are a guiding principle to Serge Horta, a Hong Kong-based photographer, who has been to over 40 countries. Coming from a background in…

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