A Vanished WorldHardback
List price $38.99
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- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
- Format: Hardback | 192 pages
- Dimensions: 224mm x 286mm x 24mm | 1,120g
- Publication date: 17 September 2001
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 0007108370
- ISBN 13: 9780007108374
- Illustrations note: 200 b/w illus
- Sales rank: 1,143,139
A beautifully produced volume of Wilfred Thesiger's finest portraiture of tribal peoples taken over decades of travel in some of the remotest areas on the planet. Wilfred Thesiger's superb portraits of tribal peoples have earned him worldwide recognition as a photographer. Using a simple box camera which had belonged to his father, Thesiger began his photographic career during a short hunting trip in Ethiopia in 1930 and used the same camera to photograph hostile Danakil tribesmen when he returned three years later to explore the Awash river. Whilst in the Sudan, and now equipped with a Leica 35mm, Thesiger portrayed the Muslim tribes in Nothern Darfur, pagan Nuer in the Western Nile swamps and Nuba wrestlers. Among Ethiopia's Danakil he had travelled as a European accompanied by servants, but here he lived increasingly on equal terms with his followers and his photography mirrors this changed attitude. The dramatic visual impact of Arabia's deserts fully awakened Thesiger's latent talent for portraiture and composition. During his five years in Arabia from 1945-50 he was able to depict his Bedu companions with a sensitivity and power only suggested by his pre-war photographs. Conceived in the harshest of settings, these Arabain pictures bear eloquent testimony to the inspirational effect the desert had upon this great traveller. In contrast, tranquil images of reeds, waterways and lagoons characterize Thesiger's matchless portraits of the Marsh Arabs of Iraq -- in which he captures a world which has now completely disappeared. In the seldom visited regions of Kurdistan, Pakistan and Afganistan Thesiger took many photographs of their striking inhabitants who remained thoroughly unselfconscious in front of the camera -- as did the graceful tribespeople of northern Kenya and Tanzania later in Thesiger's eventful life. These unique portraits were all taken under exceptional conditions. Together they provide a magnificent pictorial record of diverse cultures and vanished worlds.
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Wilfred Thesiger was born in 1910 in Ethiopia. From 1930 he travelled through remote areas of Africa, the Middle East and Asia. His journeys and his books have won him numerous prestigious awards over the years. In 1968 he was made CBE; he was honoured with a KBE in 1995.
Praise for Desert, Marsh and Mountain: 'His sensual delight in the harsh world of the nomad is apparent in his exquisite photography.' Daily Telegraph Praise for My Kenya Days: 'Magnificent photographs! displaying a reverence for their subject matter' Sunday Telegraph