Back in August I won a commission to photograph a set of buildings in the former Soviet country Azerbaijan. I took some time before and after the job to shoot my own personal work in this fast changing place. Azerbaijan … Continue reading
After one night in Kunming I caught a bus north to Dali, once a very traditional Chinese town and a favourite stop on backpacker routes through Yunnan, now Dali is an over commercialised destination, with every building in the old … Continue reading
After Guilin we flew west to Yunnan province, it was a mammoth day of travel, but we finally got to Jianshui in the evening (via a bus from Kunming). I’d chosen this town as a useful halfway point between Yuanyang … Continue reading
When a boy from the Hamar tribes is ready to ‘come of age’ he must complete the ‘Ukele Bulla’ (Cattle jumping) ceremony. This event usually happens after the harvest, and upon completion allows the man to marry, own cattle and have children. Prior to the jumping the female relatives of the man gather and demand to be whipped, the ‘Maza’ (a man who has already jumped the cattle within 3 months) uses a long fin stick to strike the women and girls on their exposed back. It is a consensual act, with the females begging the Maza for more. The more scarring on the womens back, the more devotion it shows to their families.
The young male about to leap the bulls has his head partially shaved and is rubbed with sand to wash away his sins, he is then smeared with dung to give him strength. A line of cattle are arranged to the sound of horns and drums, and the boy must complete 4 ‘jumps’, only when he has been through this initiation can he marry a wife who will be chosen by his parents.
Palio di Asti, Asti, Lombardy Province, Italy It begins at night; as darkness falls around the old streets of Asti crowds gather in San Secondo square, children jostle for the best position, families pick up slices of pizza, judges take … Continue reading