Studio portraits of Mumbai's itinerant nomads

Avi sez, "Mumbai photographer David de Souza has just put together a collection of amazing studio photos of Mumbai's colorful Nomads." The book, "Itinerants, the Nomads of Mumbai," looks and sounds like a doozy. but doesn't seem to have much in the way of distribution outside of India.

Charmayne sets the subjects of David's photos back into movement through poetic inspiration. Her writing reminds us of the mythical dimension of itinerant life, which is present in every civilization. Sedentary societies have indeed always had an ambivalent relationship to the people of the wind, as Japanese villagers call them. Itinerants have been perceived in turns as indispensable trading partners, threatening agents of change and as objects of desire. David and Charmayne's images and words bring to life some of the multiple avatars of that nomadic spirit that all of us carry deep inside and which refuses to leave.

This is probably why, turning these pages, even those of us who chose or inherited comfort and security cannot help but sigh at the thought of these untied lives, which seem to be fed by faith and magic more than anything else. Of course nomadic life, as intense and meaningful as it can be, is usually driven by necessity more than choice. But for an instant, it is liberating to believe that most of the people in this book would never trade itinerancy for routine and standardization.

The Itinerants of Mumbai

(Thanks, Avi!)