Tags / Culture
The sun sets on a river in the Swat Valley, a war zone just a few years ago.
Silvia was taking her little brother home from school. They walked alongside the Karinde Road as I met them. Silvia was strong figure of a young Kenyan woman.
Eunice Wanda lives in the Kenyan countryside. She has more grandchildren than she can count. Both of her galoshes have holes in them but it doesn't matter. Somebody has to hoe the fields. This year (2010) has been good. Lots of rain and plentiful harvest. Still, life is tough. Nobody knows about the next rain season. Eunice is proud and bows to nothing. She is the model of an independent woman of Africa.
In the Kenyan countryside people drink a lot of milktea. This little girl was having tea with her family in a small shack as we drove by and asked for directions.
A scene of daily life in the Swat Valley.
A solider stands guard during a military operation in the Swat Valley.
Pakistani police train for anti-terrorism operations in the Swat Valley.
A schoolgirl poses in front of a Pakistan flag painted on shop shutters.
My photo story portrays cross dressers and transgender women that engage in sex work in Yerevan, Armenia — the most vulnerable and at-risk group in Armenia. The subjects in my photographs are predominantly young adults who have been cast off from society, who cannot find another job because of their appearance. Many of them have had a difficult childhood; they were sexually assaulted at a young age, grew up in orphanages, lived in socially insecure situations or under the care of a single parent. Being deprived of family, education and employment, many of them chose the easiest though most dangerous way to make money. Many transgender sex workers dream of having another job, a house, a family. Sometimes they organize private transgender social gatherings, where they party and dance until dawn. Transgender sex workers mainly live apart from their families, renting alone, or with a few people (in the same apartment).
A girls works in bonded labour on a brick line. Bonded labor is a serious social issue in Pakistan today.
In 2009 some locals of Plateh village started disassembling a long-abandoned local mosque in order to build monastic cells in the monastery nearby. The monks, who initiated the action, said that the mosque had no cultural value, nor did it belong to anybody. The dissasembling of the mosque stopped after the local muslim community notified the Public Defender's office. The mosques in Georgia's Adigeni region have been abandoned since 1944, when the most of region's Muslim population was deported to Central Asia. In the course of WWII, they were perceived by the Soviet government to be Turkey's potential allies.
Indigenous cultures of Sindh region are on the decline in Pakistan. This woman wears bangles, popular in northern parts of Pakistan.
A Hindu Guru in Sindh.
The sun sets behind one of Lahore's historical mosques.
A man smoking a cigar is standing next to a building that has completely collapsed. The building next door is still standing and people continue to live and work there.
Kalash girls look out from inside a Bashali-- a women's house. Kalash women segregate themselves during menstruation and childbirth.
Fatha Rahman brings freshly cut hay onto his roof for storage. .
Kalash children playing on a donkey, Bumburet Valley.
Kalash girl preparing to bathe, Bumburet, Pakistan. Her “susutr,” (headdress), hangs on a nearby tree. Bumburet Valley.
Kalash farmers using oxen to plow their fields.
A Kalasha family on the porch of their home, Brun village.
Subsistence Farming, Bumburet Valley.
A Kalasha woman at home in Bumburat.
The club, Akhara Guru Gaya Seth, has around 150 members. Most of these train twice a day; early morning and late afternoon. A good part of the physical training consists of push-ups and rope climbing, and while dumbbells are used it is mainly their bodies they use as ballast. The actual wrestling is performed within a square approximately 4x4 meters in size.
Once a year, Oruro, a moth-coloured mining town on the Andean altiplano, emerges from its drab cocoon as an extravagant butterfly.
The Diablada, as the Carnaval of Oruro is known, rivals that of Rio de Janeiro. Dancers don elaborate costumes and compete as they whirl and twirl along the parade route during this 20-hour spectacle of colour.
The dancers' costumes can weigh as much as four kilograms and are created afresh each year.
Fueled by the sacred coca leaf, dancers and musicians surge along a 4km parade route in the 20-hour-long homage to the devil. Then, they fall to their knees and crawl into the cathedral to worship the Virgin and receive blessings from a priest.
This tradition springs from the darkness of the indigenous miners’ underground gods in contrast to Catholicism’s virginal icon.
Dancers and brass bands careen by in a kaleidoscopic clash of bodies, colors and sounds.
Even President Evo Morales attends the traditional event, underlining its cultural importance to indigenous Bolivians.
From bleachers lining the streets, tens of thousands of spectators from all over Bolivia celebrate the spiritual procession by randomly hurling water bombs as hard as they can. Alternatively, they spray foam from pressurized canisters, often on purpose, directly into the faces of their victims. After all, it’s easier to rob someone blinded by stinging foam.
Bolivia’s Vice President, Álvaro Garcia Linera, and President Evo Morales chose foam as their weapon of choice.
The mayhem continues with no regard to presidential safety - and no incidents are reported. The spectacle remains one of the most sensational in the world.