The disappearing tribes of Ethiopia

Women from the Upper Omo valley

March 30, 2016 – In south western Ethiopia, where the Omo River snakes through the lush, green forests, disappearing tribes live in their timeless grass huts.

The Surma people, made up of the Suri tribe and the Mursi tribe, are known for their impressive lip discs, a sign of beauty and status for the women.

But they are seeing their way of life slowly being wiped out by extreme drought, building of dams and the establishment of national parks which have all threatened their livelihood.

Hoping to capture the beauty of this traditional tribe before it is wiped out, photographer Louisa Seton travelled to the African country to find and record on film the lives of these extraordinary people.

Seton, who was born in Nairobi, Kenya, but is based in Sydney, Australia, travelled to the villages of the Surma people in 2015, where she stayed and photographed them. She also shot pictures of members of the Hamer tribe.

She told CNN: ‘A lot of people photograph Africa in such a negative light, with wars and famine and struggle. But I wanted to show the beauty of these incredible, strong and very proud people – the way they have an affinity with the land and the seasons.’

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