A Way into India

The last project of one of the 20th-century's finest documentary photographers.

Text by Raghubir Singh


Price: USD$45.00



About the book

Raghubir Singh (1942-99) was one of the twentieth century's finest documentary photographers. Born in Rajasthan, India, he won an international reputation, publishing over a dozen books, all on various aspects of his homeland.

A Way Into India was his last great photographic project and is a testament to his love affair with the sights, sounds and colours of India, but also with one of its most unexpected icons - the Ambassador car. Continuously in production in India since 1957, the Ambassador is everywhere to be seen, in all possible guises - from delivery van to diplomatic limousine - and has become quintessentially Indian.

Travelling back and forth across the country, Singh reveals India through the windows of the Ambassador. Temples and tourists, monsoon rains, paddy fields, tea plantations and elephants are dramatically framed by the Ambassador's distinctive curves. The old and the new sit side by side, as Singh and the Ambassador show us a way into India.

In The Press
'The last project of one of India's finest documentary photographers, this is a testament to Singh's love affair with the sights, sounds and colours of India, but also with the Ambassador car, whose windows provide a vista onto the country as Singh travelled the byways of his homeland.' (Waterstone's Book Quarterly)

'Raghubir Singh, who died in 1999, has beenĀ  hailed by many as India's greatest photographer. This book represents his last great project - to document the Ambassador car, continuously in production in India since 1957.' (Amateur Photographer)

'If you're into judging a book by its cover, then you can't go wrong with this one...The results are fabulous. We see India close-up - not through Western eyes but through the eyes of someone who knows, and loves, his country... Our tour with Singh shows us India as it really is, from a viewpoint among the people. A lovely and refreshing book.' (Travel Photography)

About the author(s)

Raghubir Singh (1942-1999) is considered by many to have been one of the twentieth century's finest colour documentary photographers. Born in Rajasthan, his work is in the permanent collections of a number of major museums, including The Art Institute of Chicago, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography. His many publications include books on Kerala, Rasjasthan, Bombay and the Ganges. River of Colour, also published by Phaidon, is the first ever published retrospective of his work.

Steve McCurry: The Unguarded Moment
Eugene Richards: Dorchester Days
Jonathan Torgovnik: Bollywood Dreams
Raghubir Singh: River of Colour
Ian Berry: Living Apart


Phaidon is the premier global publisher of the creative arts with over 1,500 titles in print. We work with the world's most influential artists, chefs, writers and thinkers to produce innovative books on art, photography, design, architecture, fashion, food and travel, and illustrated books for children. Phaidon is headquartered in London and New York City. Read more
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