BY: ALEX BROWN
Romanian photographer, Vlad Cioplea, visited Tanzania, Africa, in Autumn of last year to document the rich and vibrant cultures that live at the foot of some of the world’s most visually stunning and occult landscapes.
This photo-series was a vast divergence from Cioplea’s former project, documenting his many friends and their passions with bright portraiture, in a project simply named “100 Friends.” But in his latest project, Cioplea spent merely 20 days in Tanzania, sleeping in the wild among the tribes people and African wildlife that populates the vast savannah. Cioplea focused on the Maasai, Bushman and Tatoga tribes.
Cioplea also shares a number of intriguing details of Maasai life with Bored Panda, claiming that the “young boys are circumcised at the age of 14 and then they are sent away from the village. They have to live on their own and eat meat from what they hunt.” During his time in Tanzania, the Bushman people did their best to teach Cioplea how to hunt, and encouraged him to try monkey meat, though he refused.
Cioplea’s photos, for better or for worse, help spread awareness of these tribes and perhaps contribute to bridging the chasm of perception that exists between these cultures and the West. It is true that we have a limited knowledge of these remote cultures, as they do of Western life, and as Cioplea says, a young girl from the Tatoga tribe had long thought that Europeans were all cannibals. It is interesting to speculate whether or not this mutual ignorance is one that contributes to the cultural preservation of these tribes.