From 2002 to 2005, Claudine Doury went photographing the ouzbeks, kazakhs, and kirghiz people that still live in the desert lands of the post-soviet Central Asia and in the Xingiang province in China.
“This is the story of a slow disappearance, in the sand and in time. The end of a world, a trip through post-soviet Central Asia and the Xinjiang province in China. I had read “Djamila”, by the Kyrghyz poet Tchinguiz Aitmatov, and it made me dream of the kolkhozes lost in the steppes and of its peoples : Uzbeks, Kazakhs, Kyrgyzs, Karakapalks… From 2002 to 2005, I managed to travel to the Aral region in Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, on the banks of the Issyk Kul lake in Kyrgyzstan and in Xinjiang.
“Loulan Beauty” is the story of these people from the middle of the world, heirs of sunken kingdoms. This is the story of fishermen without a sea, of children who dance to bring back their parents who work far away, of Lola who dreams of America, of men who listen to the sands singing, of the girls with a thousand braids, just like those found on Loulan, their four thousand year old ancestor.”