Through the miracle of photography and the beholding eye of a master photographer such as Myers, we are able to experience the land and life in India's last remaining wild jungles. This is the land of the tiger and elephant and monkey and rhino and a treasure trove of other species. But, as noted writer William deBuys shares in his provocative essay, poaching is a persistent and pervasive problem, and the natural habitat for wild animals is shrinking at an alarming rate due to expanding development and industrialization. Tigers, for example, are now extinct in ninety-three percent of their historical range worldwide, and, without wildlife refuges such as Bandhavgarh, Kanha, Karizanga, and others in India, their numbers would plummet further.
Few citizens of the world will ever experience firsthand the jungles and wild places of India, but in Myers's visual discovery they can witness the excitement and energy of coming upon wild game in a moment's notice and experiencing religious shrines and rural life in nearby villages that seem to blend in effortlessly with the adjacent wilderness. The
Jungle at the Door is that rare glimpse into another world, a world that depends not only on human awareness of what is lost when the jungle is gone, but also the courage and foresight to preserve remaining wild places everywhere, from those in India to our own home ground. (See the publisher's website for further information on the book: http://gftbooks.com/books_MyersJoan.html )
About The Author
At once familiar and a revelation, immediate and distant, Joan Myers's photographs show a world in which the great beasts and humans, nature and the gods still co-exist, but William de Buys's passionate and prophetic words warn of the velocity with which that fragile coexistence is being reduced to urban myth."
Gita Mehta, filmmaker and author of Karma Cola: Marketing the Mystic East and Snakes and Ladders: Glimpses of Modern India
The Jungle at the Door: A Glimpse of Wild India by Joan Myers and William De Buys is a large format book of Myers' photography and writing and an essay by De Buys about a wild place few travelers get to visit. The large format, full color images are mystical in quality and seem to be more a work of an artist's water-color paintbrush than a photograph, partially because an early morning mist sort of dissolves some of the landscapes, and the jungle itself makes the animals sometimes difficult to spot, only creating a mystery that draws the viewer in. The writing in the book is illusional as well and creates a beautiful mood for appreciating the photographs, which include rare human sightings of animals which prefer to stay hidden, like the white elephant and the Indian tiger. You will appreciate every page of this book and return often to peruse it. A lovely coffee table or gift book.
This book documents the photography of Jan Myers in the wildlife refuges of India. Myers is a American photographer whose work appears in major museum collections and award-winning books. Most of the book consists of full-page photographic reproductions, printed without comment. Each is identified in a rear index where a small reproduction of each image is accompanied by information giving the location of the picture and identifying any animals that appear. The only text is a thoughtful and eloquent essay by Pulitzer Prize-nominated author William deBuys, who writes often on conservation topics. Myers' photographs are evocative as art, and more deeply informative than many images; she allows readers to see the natural blur or crispness of motion and atmosphere, and animals appear at their natural scale within scenes that will surprise viewers used to the close-up photography of animals in studios and zoos. The major presences that inhabit these photographs are the landscapes in which wild animals, people, and livestock appear, materializing through the greenness as astonishing and solid ghosts.