Picture Gallery: Kumaon; In the Shadow of the Devi by Manju Kak | books$excerpts | Hindustan Times
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Picture Gallery: Kumaon; In the Shadow of the Devi by Manju Kak

An important document of the life of the paharis that also discusses craft, communities, forest policy, and the status of women

books Updated: Jun 07, 2017 23:58 IST
Rhododendrons against the stunning backdrop of the Panchchuli peaks, a group fo five snow-capped Himalayan peaks, Darma valley, Pithoragarh district
Rhododendrons against the stunning backdrop of the Panchchuli peaks, a group fo five snow-capped Himalayan peaks, Darma valley, Pithoragarh district(Anup Sah)

The Himalayas capture our collective imagination with visions of serenity, natural splendour and mysticism. But these mountains also dictate the lives of those who live by its laws - the resilient hill dwellers, or paharis.

In the Shadow of the Devi: Kumaon, author Manju Kak looks at this land through the prism of woodcraft, and documents the style, influences and techniques of the craftsmen of Uttarakhand. She also looks at the Kumaoni artisans’ world view and beliefs. This book is an important document of the life of the paharis and discusses communities, forest policy, and the status of women.

Kotgarhi Devi Temple (near Thal, Chaukori), Kumaon (Vaibhav Kaul)

With pictures by award winning photographers Anup sah and Vaibhav Kaul, among others, this book focussed on Kumaon, the land that lies in the shadow of the majestic Nanda Devi. adds to the existing knowledge on Uttarakhand.

Read more: Kumaon Connection

The author Manju Kak is a writer, critic, scholar and artist who, for two decades, has been exploring unique aspects of Himalayan life. Her work includes the documentary, They Who Walked Mountains (2002), and the book Nicholas Roerich: A Quest & Legacy (2010), which she edited. She has curated an ethnographic exhibition titled Kashmiri Pandits and put together A Vintage Album: The Making of Modern India(2013). As a painter her last show was Ranikhet State of Mind (2016)

A group of women in traditional festive attire in Sosa village, Pithoragarh district, Kumaon. (Anup Sah)
Rhododendrons, Tungnath ( Vaibhav Kau)
Kedarnath Temple on the opening day (Akshaya Tritiya, 9 May 2015) (Vaibhav Kaul)
Traditional Cholia dance at Nainital Mall (Anup Sah)
Spire of Kedarnath Temple, Rudraprayag district, Garhwal (Deb Mukherjee)
Rhododenrons against the stunning backdrop of the Panchchuli peaks, a group of five snow-capped Himalayan peaks, Darma valley, Pithoragarh district (Anup Sah)
A vintage view of Tallital Bazaar, Nainital (Private Collection/Photographer unknown)