Man started taming horses about 5000 years ago. At the time the familiar modern type had not yet developed: it is the result of millennia of human involvement. Of the few original variants of the original species, a descendant still survives: a population of about 1500 horses live wild, free and untamed on the Dzungarian steppes of deep Central Asia. This Mongolian horse is the only true subspecies of wild horse remaining on Earth: others, more or less lucky survivors that we meet in Asia, in South America and in North America, are masterless or undomesticated horses of modern stock living in the wild. Nonetheless, both populations are symbols of freedom, universal testimonials of the pleasure of running wild; they are exhilarating beauty of unharnessed movement. A small band of dedicated, specialist photographers have for many years tracked wild horses in the farthest reaches of the world, observing and photographing them. They have taken pictures of great beauty that portray horses of the unbound prairies, grazing, galloping, clashing and mating, driven by instinct and unrestrained by the hand of man.
This book is a tribute to humankind's most valued friend, free at last to be the wonderful - and even occasionally wild - creature that millions of years of evolution have created.
Paolo Manili, a professional journalist living in Milan, has for more than thirty years been one of Italy's leading photo-reporters of horses and equestrian sports. He pioneered equestrian photojournalism in the specialised review Lo Sperone, the at Cavallo Magazine, and more recently at Cavallo Sport, of which he is one of the most distinguished contributors. He brought the horse to such glossy reviews as Polo International, Capital ans Gente Viaggi, and for a decade and a half he has written equestrain sports reviews for Il Resto del Carlino, La Nazione, Il Giorno and other leading newspapers.