Anu Malhotra’s book, Soul Survivors is a pictorial catalogue of the three unique cultures which Anu had shot while filming her documentaries on The Apa Tani of Arunachal Pradesh and The Konyak of Nagaland in 2000-01, and during her journey in Tibet in 2002. Since then, these have become important archival material.
Besides a stunning compilation of photographs, insightful essays by the filmmaker form a personal narrative of her observations, experiences, and insights which narrate the customs, traditions, cuisines, costumes and quotidian rhythms of these three distinctive cultures.
The Soul Survivors photography and multimedia exhibition was showcased at the National Museum, New Delhi, in 2011 and at Bikaner House, New Delhi, in 2018.
With Soul Survivors, Anu hopes to heighten awareness and appreciation of some wisdom traditions that have remained valid over centuries and showcase the beauty of the tribal spirit.
Anu Malhotra’s documentaries can be viewed on:
The Apa Tani of Arunachal Pradesh
The Konyak of Nagaland
The Road to Nirvana (Tibet)
With this visual feast that defines the lifestyle, customs and heritage of remote North-Eastern mountainscapes, Anu Malhtora argues that the ancient and pristine tribal way of life, in pace with the earth’s timeless cycles, may offer solutions for modern living to escape mindless development. Warriors and shamans, hunters and weavers, mothers and wives—all find place in this extraordinary narrative that explores how cultures and customs are polluted by invasion, repopulation, urbanisation, and migration. Soul Survivors is a record of the relics, festivals, worship, customs, manners, food, and topography of a forgotten India that is slowly opening itself up to the world.
Soul Survivors is a compassionate tour de force, with insights describing living cultures that can teach us how to lead better lives.
Ravi Shankar Etteth, Author
Anu Malhotra’s journey into the lives and complex philosophies of ancient communities reinforces the crying need to restore those fundamental values and ethos of humankind that once defined living in harmony with the natural environment, an inherited legacy that has been rudely brutalised by unthinking, random and exploitative ‘modernisation’. There is much to learn from these peoples’, much to reintroduce into our insular lives, much to reinvent for changed times from tried and tested philosophies and traditions. We need more ‘Anu Malhotras’ to explore the true and living wealth of our planet.
Malvika Singh, Publisher & Editor, Seminar
Pictures that will haunt me long after I’ve gone home, portraits that will stay with me in my moments of silence and meditation, photographs that have successfully glimpsed into the innermost intimacies after piercing through but retaining the outermost shells.
Kishore Singh, Art Crtic & Writer
Anu Malhotra is one of India’s top filmmakers. She has won over 17 National awards and one International award for her insightful documentaries, trend setting television programming, and impactful awareness campaigns. She has produced, directed and written for several acclaimed and popular television shows like Namaste India, Indian Holiday, Khubsoorat, Jhatpat Khanna, and Breakfast with Zee. Her prominent documentary films include: The Apa Tani of Arunachal Pradesh, The Konyak of Nagaland, The Maharaja of Jodhpur, and Shamans of the Himalayas. She showcased her first solo photography multimedia exhibition titled “Soul Survivors” at the National Museum, New Delhi, in 2011; and at Bikaner House, New Delhi, in 2018.