First Prize Winner- New York Center for Photographic Art

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I was thrilled to be chosen as a 1st place prize winner in the 2014 New York Center for Photographic Art Black and White Awards for her photograph Surma Family In the Omo Valley

The New Century Artists Gallery in Chelsea’s gallery district will exhibit Surma Family In the Omo Valley from April 7-19, 2015, with an opening reception on Thursday, April 9, 2015

To view the online gallery, click here: BlackAndWhite2014Gallery

 

Into The Mists Of Time – In The Omo Valley

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Traveling through the mists of time to the Omo Valley in Ethiopia

just home – an adventure beyond words and worlds

so many tales to tell and photos

just beginning to work with them

 on the go every day

up at 5 am  to catch the beautiful dawn in the tribal villages

amazing skies every day

cascading clouds blue skies

afternoon thunder rumbling

short rain and then sometimes a rainbow

the people and customs and cultural diversity astounding

 mankind may have begun here

though this may be the endgame

the Turkish are clearing the forests and planting cotton fields

the Chinese government is building a massive dam project and the flood plain agriculture practiced here for all time

will soon end

we talk with the local guides

the people know  to varying degrees that their life will be changing very soon

they would prefer to be left alone and untill recently 

 lived on the barter system

but now they  pose for us 

and ask for money for each picture

we feel like human Atms

and they feel 

like they have reluctantly joined this game

I mean we show up at their homes and villages

(I wonder sometimes should we even be here)

and they might as well make what they can from it 

it sets up a strange dynamic 

that is hard to pierce

but if one takes the time

and spends some time in a village

and puts down their camera

and takes part in some of the rituals

It is possible to connect and hear each other

and say I want to tell your stories

I hope there is a way to move forward

for tribal life to progress

to have better health care and schools and clean water

new income streams and some  economic potential

with out obliterating  tribal traditions

and  I wonder what’s next…

I think of how many times in history this story has been played out by native populations

trying to save their way of life…