Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Sebastião Salgado | Amazônia

Photo © Sebastião Salgado | Courtesy Folha de S.Paulo
I'm very glad to have stumbled on the latest work by the legendary Sebastião Salgado. It's published as a reportage in the magazine (or blog?) of the Brazilian newspaper Folha de S. Paulo, and while its descriptive text is in Portuguese, I used an online translator tool to feature it here.

The remote tribe known as the Korubos received Sebastião Salgado, in September 2017. He was welcomed with guttural sounds such as "hey hey hey", and stayed in their village in the Javari valley for 20 days to produce his new project, "Amazônia".

The Korubos number about 80, and maintain regular contact with officials of the Brazilian State... but have had little contact with the "white" culture. They are divided into two villages on the banks of the Ituí River, in the Indigenous Land Vale do Javari, in western Amazonas, along the border with Peru, 3,500 km from São Paulo and 1,200 km from Manaus.

This tribe was known in the 20th century for the violence with which it attacked invaders of its territories. Their defensive attacks were followed by reprisals from non-Indians. Nowadays, the Korubos want to talk.

Sebastião Salgado produced a series of photographic reports about the Amazon, with an emphasis on indigenous groups that have had little contact with the "white" culture. "Amazônia" is a continuation of his earlier work, "Genesis". It seeks to portray the autochthonous peoples of Brazil, inhabitants of the world's largest forest, threatened by the destruction caused by an unsustainable exploitation.

For this long term project, Salgado visited several tribes and will conduct other expeditions in 2019, which he hopes will see publications and exhibitions that will form part of the project.