Faces of Nagaland  since 2010, black and white


When I started travelling Nagaland the diversity of faces in the area struck me. There is 16 »recognized tribes« today, with even more »unrecognized« beside them. In the beginning – though exotic – they all appear »the same« to western eyes, but slowly one starts recognizing the differences and realizes that almost every part of Asia is visible in the facial structure of Nagas. Mongolians, Koreans, Japanese, Chinese, Thai and more – all left their impression on these people, showing the long way the Nagas migrated to their homeland of today.

The series is two-fold. One part of the pictures showes double portraits of children with their parents (i.e. a father with his daughter or a mother with her son), the second tries to show the variety of faces of all age groups. Since backgrounds are varying and not always easily adjusted I use a white vignette to focus on the faces.
I also chose black and white and the format of 4x5 to connect to the famous ethnographers, who travelled the area earlier and formed the western view of these people. Unlike other photographers of todays Nagas I show my models unstaged in their everyday dress.