Honorable Mention TIFA 2022 People / Culture

Mentawei: Keepers of The Forest

  • Photographer
    Jatenipat Ketpradit
  • Photo Date
    10/07/2020 - 17/07/2020

Deeper within one Siberut island rainforest of Indonesia , there is one spot that has not been altered by the passage of time. For almost 1,000 years, Mentawai aborigines have resided in this forest. They still believe in nature and revere spirits. They are skilled at tattooing the body with natural ink. They Mentawais converse with natural spirits through shaman. The skulls will beare used in the rituals and placed on the home to fend off the devil. These people live in a manner reminiscent of ancient times, with no electricity and a strong relationship with nature.