The Last Nomadic Hunter-Gatherers of the Himalayas: Jan Møller Hansen Captures “the Rautes”

On Art and Aesthetics

Jan Møller Hansen

Passionate about visual storytelling, Danish development practitioner, diplomat and award-winning self-taught photographer Jan Møller Hansen (born 1964) has—among other subjects—captured slum dwellers, indigenous and aborigine people, brick kiln workers, sexual minorities, sex workers, refugees, acid survivors and other marginalised people while living and working in Asia and Africa.

One of his most amazing recent projects is the documentation of the Rautes—the nomadic hunter-gatherers of the Himalayas who live in temporary camps in remote parts of the Achham district in Nepal. They call themselves “Kings of Forests”, and subsist on langur and macaque monkeys, wild yams, rice and a few kinds of vegetables traded from local farmers. Their main occupation is the exchange of wooden items in nearby villages and bazaars. They often migrate from river valleys up to middle hills in the Western region of the country. In these haunting yet captivating photographs, we see them in a grey…

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