“Garhwal Himalayas: Chorus of Solitude” captures the hills before nature sent everything downhill

Six years ago art curator and writer Alka Raghuvanshi and photographer Sanjay Sharma started a journey up the Garhwal hills to capture the pristine beauty of the Himalayas between covers. Little did they know that it will become one of the last documents on the region before the nature’s fury hit the Garhwal Himalayas.

Called “Garhwal Himalayas: Chorus of Solitude”, Raghuvanshi says many of her trips were made well before the book was even planned. “It took almost six years for the book to take shape. After years of my journeys in the hills, I felt the need to put all the experiences together in the form of a book as there was a need for a graphic account on the region.”

Calling the book “a journey of faith and reality”, Raghuvanshi says it has been a spiritual, artistic and intellectual expedition for her. Photographs taken by Sanjay Sharma express not just the Himalayas’ natural beauty but also the socio-cultural patterns of the Garhwali society. His interplay of light and shadows provides a photo guide to Raghuvanshi’s insightful observations on the region. Together, they have captured the myths, legends and the religious harmony of the region.Sharma says, “Photography has been my passion and it was enjoyable for me but my family had to suffer a lot because on most festivals and family occasions I remained away from the family. This exploring journey would not have been possible without the prime support of some of my friends who remained with me during my whole expedition and hence capturing enthralling mountains became easier for me.”