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John Kenny


Country  –   Ethiopia
Culture   –   Hamer
Year        –    2008


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Turmi in southern Ethiopia is one of the largest Hamer settlements. Turmi’s size is due to its dirt road to the outside world, and its location near to water: an ephemeral river floods here in the wet season, cutting off this whole part of the Omo valley for vehicles for weeks.

I met this young girl at the Monday market. She was carrying an ornately carved calabash (gourd), with enough water for the journey to and from the market. She had come to the market to buy powdered red ochre which is the foundation (in addition to buttermilk) of the stunning, metallic sheen that you can see on her hair and her skin. The ochre is brought into the Omo valley and its origin is well guarded secret.

John Kenny’s work is all shot on location in some of the remotest corners of Africa. His images are all taken with natural light and in their day to day attire.

The C-type prints are mounted with an acrylic face mount giving them a 3-dimensional appearance and a contemporary look.

Cowboy of Wamba

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