Feb 20, 2010

Wanga Valley, Himalaya 1863 - Photographed by Samuel Bourne

Photograph from Wanga Valley, Himalaya from the 'Strachey Collection of Indian Views'. This photograph was taken by Samuel Bourne in 1863.

The Wanga Valley in the Himalayan foothills was popular with 19th Century Britons because it ideally suited their Victorian taste for the romantic pastoral. It was chosen owing to its pleasant climate and spectacular views of forests of pines, firs and cedars and rows of snow capped peaks disappearing in the distance. These picturesque images represent some of photographer Samuel Bourne’s best work. 'This view of the Wanga valley also invites comparison with Ansel Adams and his pictures of Yosemite. Bourne makes dramatic use of the contrasts between the tall slender trees and the massive mountain behind them, as well as the tonal contrast with their near silhouettes and the aerial perspective which renders the mountain in paler greys, complete with clouds swirling around its summit'.

Source: British Library online gallery (http://bl.uk)