A Souvenir from Nepal’s Streets: Soha Menassa

Text by Soha Menassa

I honestly did not know what to expect from Nepal when we were planning this trip. I did not know much about the country except from what I’d seen in some very pretty and exotic photos taken by friends and other world photographers.

If I could describe the first few days in Kathmandu, I would say they were very overwhelming. So many colors, social fabrics and cultural scenes caught my attention, making it almost impossible to take street photographs.

I was stuck for some time – most of the time – with travel shots. As days went by, shooting got better and better. It was becoming friendlier and funnier too. I somehow felt at home despite the cultural differences, and most of all, I felt at peace with myself and the environment.

Almost a year after this trip, I still long for Thamel’s tiny streets, the smell of the incense in the temples and the stupas, the sudden showers of the monsoon when we least expected them, the lovely walks by the Phewa Lake, and most of all the friendly evenings with the 16 amazing photographers.

I will definitely go back – this time mentally prepared to take some real street photographs.


Photo by Soha Menassa

This photo is one of my favorites. It was taken at the World Peace Pagoda, a quiet, sober Japanese temple very different from the other local ones. I think it breaks the cliché people expect to see from Nepal.

Unlike the busy streets of Kathmandu and the joyful shores of the Phewa Lake, white is dominant in this photograph, giving it a semblance of serenity.

But isn’t white the result of the combination of all colors?

Soha is one of the 17 photographers who went on BSP’s Nepal photo-trip in August 2012. This capture is only one among the many unique and stunning street photographs taken during that trip that will be showcased in our upcoming exhibition on June 11th and 12th at the UNESCO Palace. 

More information about the exhibition: Street Kabita: Collective Photography Exhibition

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