XXXIII. Papua New Guinea

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Enga

Enga

Papua New Guinea

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Huli II

Huli II

Papua New Guinea

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With a population of around 250,000 in Hela province, the Huli community is the largest in the highlands. They are famous for their unique custom of wearing impressive wigs decorated with tropical feathers. 

"I want people to reflect on how they look at indigenous people, and themselves." - Mundiya Kepanga

In addition to these elaborate headdresses grown from their own hair, they wear bright facial paint in red, yellow and white – colours chosen to strike fear into their enemy in times of conflict. Nowadays, Huli men more often wear their traditional dress to sing and dance.

Kaluli

Kaluli

Papua New Guinea

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The Kaluli people live in scattered villages in the dense jungle on the slopes of Mount Bosavi in the southern highlands. They live by fishing, hunting and gathering. Their fertile gardens grow thick with breadfruit, bananas and green vegetables. 

Approximately 15 families – up to 90 people – can live in a single longhouse.

In the villages, Kaluli people live in longhouse communities. The longhouse is a wooden structure measuring around 40 by 10 metres, built on poles at the centre of the village.

Iatmul

Iatmul

Papua New Guinea

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More than 300 languages are spoken among the various communities a long the Sepik River. Their different heritage, rituals and historical backgrounds distinguish these groups, but one factor connects them all: their life revolves around the river.

Living in the village is much better than living in town – I can hear my own emotions here.

The women catch fish and make sago while the men paddle dugout canoes filled with goods to trade with neighbouring villages. This area of Papua New Guinea is one of the least affected by outside influences. A round 430,000 people live here, relying on whatever the river and the forest provides.

Korafe

Korafe

Papua New Guinea - Coast

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The Korafe community lives close to the town of Tufi in the north-east of Papua New Guinea’s main island. Tufi is close to Cape Nelson, a coastal area consisting of tropical ‘fjords’. 

The impressive Korafe headdress is worn only by men.

Korafes are known for their impressive facial tattoos and feathered headdresses, and at ceremonies and special events, they wear tapa cloths, shell jewellery and feathers.