Photography by Hans Silvester

German photographer Hans Silvester documents the extraordinary body painting of the Surma and Mursi peoples of the Omo Valley in southern Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan.

“The Surma and Mursi tribes are body painters. They paint their bodies with natural pigments made from the earth. They paint themselves and each other in a tradition that has remained unchanged for millenia. They use their bodies as canvases, painting their skin with pigments made from powdered volcanic rock and adorning themselves with materials obtained from flowers, leaves, grasses, shells and animal horns.”

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