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Before the Baigue. Photography.

Before the Baigue. Photography.

Regular price $180.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $180.00 USD
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Boston Book Fair 2023 / Photography / Travel & Exploration
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Before the Baigue. Photography.

N.p., ca 1930s.
9x14 cm.

Gelatin silver print.
Light wear to edges, owner’s mark to upper right corner, oval image mounted to back side.


The photograph captures a group of men before a baigue, which is one of the oldest and widely practiced forms of horse racing among Turkic people. Baigue involves riding across rugged terrains for long distances (in the past, ranging from 5–15 km and sometimes exceeding 50 km), where the rider's tactical skill plays a crucial role. Its origin is rooted in the nomadic way of life and the need to train horses for long journeys. Today, baigue races are conducted at hippodromes.
Based on the owner's mark, this particular photo was taken in South Kazakhstan in 1930s. It is important to highlight that between 1929 and 1931, Kazakhstan witnessed more than 370 uprisings against the Soviet policy of enforced collectivization and the consequent dismantling of the traditional nomadic lifestyle. These uprisings were met with brutal suppression by the authorities.

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