The Nepali people belong to 102 ethnicities, castes and other groups and speak 92 living languages. Amidst sweeping political and social changes, it has become very important to define oneself along ethnic lines, to show where loyalties lie. How can the people of Nepal safeguard themselves from short-sighted, power-hungry identity politics? Being Nepali is a portrait series that questions the new Federal Democratic Republic Nepali identity.
Nayantara Gurung Kakshapati graduated from Mt Holyoke College, Massachusetts with a degree in International Relations and Studio Art. She went on to the SALT Institute of Documentary Studies, Portland, Maine to study Documentary Photography. NayanTara came back home to Nepal in 2006 and began working as a freelance photographer and multimedia producer. Her work focuses on intimately documenting her country‐ ‘the New Nepal’‐ and its dynamic struggle to find peace after a decade long Maoist’s ‘People’s War’ from 1996‐ 2006.
In 2007, NayanTara co founded photo.circle; a photography collective that has created a vibrant platform for emerging and professional photographers in Nepal. photo.circle offers Nepali photographers learning opportunities through workshops and creates space for photographers to exhibit, publish and market their work in Nepal, the region and internationally.
You can find out more on her website at http://www.nayantara.com.np/