Friday, 5 August 2016

Udit Kulshrestha | The Nocte People

Photo © Udit Kulshrestha _ All Rights Reserved
The Nocte people, are an ex-headhunting lower hill tribe of the Patkai hills of eastern Arunachal Pradesh. They are ethnically related to the Konyak Nagas, and are originally from the Hukong Valley in Myanmar, from where they migrated during the 1670s-1700s.

They originally followed Theravada Buddhism and animism, but have adopted Hinduism since the 18th century. Many of them converted to Christianity by American missionaries whose objectives were to convert tribes in Myanmar and China. The Nocte society is divided into two groups, the chiefs and the commoners.

Udit Kulshrestha has photographed the Noctes, and his monochromatic gallery is on his website. An interview with him and on his Noctes work is also on The Wire, a web publication in Delhi.

Udit is an Indian photographer whose primary focus is on subjects of culture and social issues. I have particularly admired his excellent work on the Nautch Girls of Sonepur, Sanskaar, Braj Holi, Kumbh Mela and Pushkar Fair.

His work was published by Time Magazine, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Fortune, LA Times, Washington Post and leading Indian publications such as The Caravan, FountainINK, Hindustan Times, Times of India, Sunday Guardian, Motherland etc. His work has been recognized by the Smithsonian Institute. He prefers to delve in the culture and conflict in the unseen geographies of North East India. He is also the author of Darwaze, a limited edition self published pictorial photobook of his early works.