Dying life of the tribe: Spectacular pictures by British photographer capture the people who are in danger of disappearing forever
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What squicks me out the most about this article? Is it the fact that the opening story shows a white man determined to gain the trust of a tribe of indigenous people solely so he could photograph them despite their unwillingness (not because he is genuinely interested in learning about their culture)? Is it the fetishization and othering of these individuals, put on display like artifacts in a museum, that has deep, horrible roots in British colonialization and imperialism? Is it sentences like
Jimmy, who travelled widely as a young man before becoming a successful commercial photographer, has spent the last three years photographing 35 of the most aesthetically beautiful and remote tribes in all corners of the world.
Is it perhaps the horrible white-man savior complex that manifests in the photographer's belief that only he can show these people how special they are?
"The essence of the project is to make people aware of how scarce their individuality is. Not to be patronising, but to say this is what you are and to show them they have a value that is precious. The world is changing and we're not going to stop it, but I hope in my own way, to encourage them not to abandon everything that makes them so individual."
Or is it the fact that none of the profits of this book will benefit the photographer's subjects in any way and that the only message this book delivers is that colonialism is alive and well and even celebrated as an art form?
Perhaps this photographer can compare notes with another White Person Who Knows Better Than The Silly Tribespeople. They deserve each other.