High on India's northern frontier, at the edge of Tibet, lies Ladakh, a desert wilderness that is the final stronghold of Tibetan Buddhism. Sparsely populated, it is a place of extremes of climate and inhospitable terrain, but it is also one of spellbinding beauty. Prabuddha Das Gupta, one of India's finest photographers, first went to Ladakh in 1995 and has since returned eight times, in thrall to the magnificence of its landscape and its compassionate, serene people. In this book, he allows his camera to range over forbidding views of snow and stone, expanses of sand furrowed by the wind, mysterious conjunctions of water and earth and endless vistas of sky and cloud. The photographs also reflect the vitality, dignity and calm of the exceptional people who inhabit this vast and empty landscape. together they depict an unforgettable portrait of this ancient and enigmatic land. Das Gupta passionately believes that the onrush of civilisation should be checked before it destroys India's last untrammelled mountain wilderness. any wilderness, he feels, as imbued with spirituality as Ladakh, can teach people and nations how to live together harmoniously and at one with the environment. His haunting and evocative images embody a unique vision, displaying to best effect the profoundly, mystery and allure of one of the planet's last great wild places.
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