Hans Silvester’s Tribal Portraits

Hans Silvester is a German-born artist that followed a good number of career paths, including forays into journalism, philanthropy and environmental activism. Born in Lorrach, Germany in 1938, he graduated from the School of Fribourg in 1955. After that he became a traveler and photographer. 

His oeuvre includes studies of various regions around the world, including France, Central America, Japan, Portugal, Egypt, Tunisia, Hungary, Peru, Italy and Spain throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s. After that he turned his attention toward Europe’s nature preserves, the expansive Calavon river valley, and the Amazon. Then he moved on to the Great Indian Desert, documenting the lives of women in Rajasthan, before publishing a number of book series devoted to locations such as the colorful landscapes of Provence and the Greek Isles.  

Silvester’s recent work features the Surma and Mursi people of the Omo Valley in southern Ethiopia, presenting the beauty of the tribes’ ancient tradition of temporary body decoration. His photographs reveal the use of bright mineral paints to embellish the skin and the use of flora and fauna to fashion spectacular headpieces and body accessories.

<dt class="title">Natural Fashion: No. 77<em>, 2006</em></dt><dd class="series information"><p>From the <em>Natural Fashion</em> series (2006-2007)</p></dd><dd class="medium">C-print</dd><dd class="image dimensions"> 26 3/4 x 39 1/4 inches</dd><dd class="edition">Edition of 10</dd>

<dt class="title">Natural Fashion: No. 77<em>, 2006</em></dt><dd class="series information"><p>From the <em>Natural Fashion</em> series (2006-2007)</p></dd><dd class="medium">C-print</dd><dd class="image dimensions"> 26 3/4 x 39 1/4 inches</dd><dd class="edition">Edition of 10</dd>

 See more of his work here.

Biography via marlboroughgallery

spotted on featherandwebb

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