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The Lost Amazon

The Pioneering Expeditions of Richard Evans Schultes
Hardcover Book
Publisher: 
Insight Editions
 | 
May, 2016
ISBN:
9781608876549
In stock now: 
4
$24.99 CAD$19.99 CAD20%
Banyen's Description: 

In 1941 Richard Evans Schultes took leave of Harvard University and disappeared into the Amazon rain forest of Colombia. Twelve years later, he resurfaced having gone places no outsider had ever been. He mapped uncharted rivers and lived among two dozen Indian tribes while collecting some thirty thousand botanical specimens, including the sacred hallucinogenic mushroom known to the Aztecs as the “Flesh of the Gods” and ayahuasca (or yagé), known to indigenous cultures as the “Vine of the Soul.” Schultes (1915-2001) is widely regarded as the greatest botanical explorer of the 20th century.

He was also, according to one of his protegés, ethnobotanist Wade Davis, "a lover of all things Indian and Amazonian." Davis presented an in-depth portrait of his mentor in One River (1996) and now reveals another facet of this remarkable pioneer, Schultes' gifts as a field photographer. Schultes took hundreds of photographs of the northwest Amazon between 1941 and 1953, using a Rolleiflex twin-lens reflex camera, which, as Davis so astutely observes, required the photographer to hold the camera at waist height and gaze down into it, thus bowing to one's subject. This posture of respect is in keeping with Schultes' sense of reverence and wonder, a quality palpable in his striking black-and-white photographs of Amazonians and their magnificent and mysterious world. The photos include well-observed anthropological documents of Indian rituals and crafts, candid shots of everyday life and romantic photos of towering mesas, thundering falls and mist-shrouded rivers. The result is an absorbing biographical and visual record of a quickly vanishing culture and landscape and a larger-than-life explorer of exterior and interior terrains.

Including a biographical essay from his former student, best-selling author Wade Davis, The Lost Amazon is a tribute to the brilliance of Schultes’s vision and an unrivaled anthropological record of a way of life that can never be recaptured.

Originally published in 2004, The Lost Amazon is now in a Second Edition (2016) with a new preface by Wade Davis.

Publisher’s Description: 

In 1941 Richard Evans Schultes took leave of Harvard University and disappeared into the Amazon rain forest of Colombia. Twelve years later, he resurfaced having gone places no outsider had ever been. He mapped uncharted rivers and lived among two dozen Indian tribes while collecting some thirty thousand botanical specimens, including the sacred hallucinogenic mushroom known to the Aztecs as the “Flesh of the Gods” and ayahuasca (or yagé), known to indigenous cultures as the “Vine of the Soul.” Schultes is widely regarded as the greatest botanical explorer of the twentieth century.

Including a biographical essay from his former student, best-selling author Wade Davis, The Lost Amazon is a tribute to the brilliance of Schultes’s vision and an unrivaled anthropological record of a way of life that can never be recaptured.

Schultes (1915-2001) was a plant explorer and expert in sacred hallucinogenic plants. He was also, according to one of his protegés, ethnobotanist Wade Davis, "a lover of all things Indian and Amazonian." Davis presented an in-depth portrait of his mentor in One River (1996) and now reveals another facet of this remarkable pioneer, Schultes' gifts as a field photographer. Schultes took hundreds of photographs of the northwest Amazon between 1941 and 1953, using a Rolleiflex twin-lens reflex camera, which, as Davis so astutely observes, required the photographer to hold the camera at waist height and gaze down into it, thus bowing to one's subject. This posture of respect is in keeping with Schultes' sense of reverence and wonder, a quality palpable in his striking black-and-white photographs of Amazonians and their magnificent and mysterious world. The photos include well-observed anthropological documents of Indian rituals and crafts, candid shots of everyday life and romantic photos of towering mesas, thundering falls and mist-shrouded rivers. The result is an absorbing biographical and visual record of a quickly vanishing culture and landscape and a larger-than-life explorer of exterior and interior terrains.

Over the course of his time in the Amazonian basin, Schultes took over 10,000 images of plants, landscapes, and the indigenous peoples with whom he lived. Originally published in 2004, The Lost Amazon is now in a Second Edition (2016) with a new preface by Wade Davis.

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