Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Anders Ryman: Rites of Passage

Photo © Anders Ryman-All Rights Reserved
Anders Ryman is a Swedish photographer and writer who has been published in a wide range of international magazines, including Animan, GEO and National Geographic Nordic. He specializes in people, travel and ethnic cultures.

The New York Times featured news of Rites of Life an exhibition of Anders' photographs in a development on the south bank of the River Thames, through September 6.

The photographer spent more than seven years on the project, and it won the support UNESCO. The article tells us that "images from Ethiopia, Spain and Micronesia illustrate birth customs; others, from Turkey, Thailand, Norway and South Africa, show various sorts of initiation ceremonies; still other highlight weddings in Nepal and Morocco. Finally, end of life rituals are captured Bolivia, India and Madagascar."
"I decided to focus of rites of passage as it is something which unites us as humans."-Anders Ryman
Also available through the Rites of Life website is Anders' 560 pages book which is for sale. The book portrays more than thirty rituals from all corners of the globe.  The rituals include the blessing of a newborn in a small village in Spain to a girl’s initiation into womanhood among the Apaches of Arizona; from the Xhosa male initiation ceremony in South Africa to the communion with the dead during Todos Santos in Bolivia; from a woman’s first chilbirth in Palau to the wedding ceremonies in the Shinto shrines of Tokyo.

It certainly looks like an exhibition I will try to visit when I'm next in London.  I would like to see these photographs in large format...unfortunately, Anders' website does not render enough justice to his photographs.