Durga

Nominated by Jamel Shabazz

Curated by Kim Hubbard (National Geographic)

Featuring Sara Hylton

Nestled between the jungles of the Indian plains and the vast Himalayan mountains, the small country of Nepal is an oasis of beauty and tranquility. When a 7.9 magnitude earthquake hit Nepal on April 25th, 2015 followed by a powerful aftershock on May 12th, 2015, the world stood in shock. Though Nepal sits directly on the fault line and is one of the world’s most quake prone regions, it’s lack of preparedness and adequate infrastructure left
parts of the country widely devastated.

I visited Nepal one month after the earthquake and spent three weeks documenting the aftermath and the rebuilding process. In the Hindu faith, Goddess Durga is widely worshipped and is known as the mother Goddess, she is the root cause of creation, preservation, and annihilation. Durga was a consistent theme in the way the Nepalese hypothesized what happened to their land and their people. Though the devastation of the earthquake cannot be undermined, this series is a documentation of the conception of Durga and the resilience, faith, and beauty that was present amid the devastation.

Sara Hylton is a Canadian documentary and portrait photographer based between Brooklyn, New York and New Delhi, India.  Sara completed a post-graduate certificate in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography from the International Center of Photography and also holds a Master of Arts in International Conflict Studies from Kings College London. When Sara is not working with international organizations, she can be found in a quaint corner of the world pursuing personal projects.

Sara’s principal medium is the portrait. She believes that through this documentation she is able to share an exchange with her varied subjects and capture them in their most natural state of being. Resilience, humanity, and the quiet beauty in everyday life guides her work. Sara has been featured by the New York Times, the Financial Times, Reuters, Smithsonian Magazine, the Guardian, American Photo, and Ricochet News among others. Sara was also nominated for PDN’s 30 Emerging Photographers to watch (2014).

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