Omo - Full catalogue

A selection of Black and White Portraits by David Ballam of Tribes from the Omo Valley, Ethiopia.  The valley lies in the Southwest of Ethiopia close to its borders with Kenya and Sudan and forms part of the Ethiopian sector of the East African Rift Valley System.

There are more than 16 tribes of different ethnic and language groups that live in the Omo Valley with an estimated 200 000 tribal people. Some believe the tribes to be among the most fascinating and unique on the African continent - and around the world.

Embroidered animal skins, colourful beads, shells, clay plates, body painting and scarring (to name a few) are used by the tribes to decorate themselves. From tribe to tribe the type of adornments differ, and in most cases, one can determine which tribe a woman or a man belongs to and their social status according to their adornments.

Each tribe has its own traditions, beliefs and customs and in their own unique way they all continue to retain their original lifestyle.