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  • Writer's pictureRobin Yong

Sisters 姊妹

Updated: Jan 14

Sisters - one of my most successful photos and a spin-off from my Flowers of Ethiopia series.

During my trip to Ethiopia in 2016, I photographed some of the other tribes as well and called this other series Tales of the Omo Valley.

These ladies are from the Arbore Tribe of the Omo Valley, Ethiopia.

Ethiopia, in the Horn of Africa, is a rugged, landlocked country split by the Great Rift Valley.

The Arbore are a Cushitic ethnic group living in southern Ethiopia, near Lake Chew Bahir. The Arbore people are pastoralists. With a total population of 6,850, the Abore population is divided into four villages, named: Gandareb, Kulaama, Murale, and Eegude.

Unmarried ladies of the Arbore Tribe, Omo Valley Ethiopia - cover their shaven heads with a long black scarf. The ladies are also well-known for their very elaborate beaded necklaces and aluminium jewelry.

The photo was done using just natural lighting alone. The ladies were standing just outside their hut and were never taught to pose. The picture was converted to monochrome to give it more character.

With archaeological finds dating back more than 3 million years, it’s a place of ancient culture. In the Omo Valley, there are many tribes still living in the same way where life used to be a few hundred years ago. The place is a real eye opener...very rugged but it is also the place where some of my best photos come from.

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