les bons sauvages / celui qui regarde avec la tête voilée


some salvage ethnography.

specimens, samples, synecdoches … collected among vanishing tribes thriving in overgrown ruins, cultivating fruit and flowers in imperiled gardens.

one more hazardous* direction of curiosity taken with a camera. 

and still hoping to make pictures of odd headdresses, priestesses dancing, nudes …

a next expedition is being set up for summer 2021.



* footnotes

jean-marie blas de roblès (‚ce qu’ici-bas nous sommes‘) was appreciated as a guide as was marc augé (‚un ethnologue dans le métro‘), claude léwi-strauss (in hours of interviews) and nigel barley’s reassuring ‚not a hazardous sport‘. 

while working on the project several pilgrimages were made to an exhibition of edward curtis’ ‘the north american indian‘ at the nonam (zurich, 2019-2020).

approaches analogous to curtis’ still seem to be popular (‚before they pass away‘ by jimy nelson, salgado’s ‚genesis‘ or even christina de middel’s afronauts?) whereas critique appears to have become less patient. 

the most perplexing document i came across were the ‚guidelines for photographers‘ issued by a european development ngo (still not quite sure whether they’re real or a hoax in the manner of monty python or the yes men). 

thanks to the museum der kulturen in basel for hosting a precursor project ‚wir, die wilden!‘ (we, the savage!), a partly ethnographic photography workshop for children. 

‚celui qui regarde avec la tête voilée‘ is a citation quoted by pierre fournié (it may refer to how children from tierra del fuego called their first photographers).