TOKYO-2017 Book / Fine Art

Plastic Maasai

  • Prize
    Gold in Book/Fine Art
  • Photographer
    Tobias Hildebrandt

Zanzibar, lying off 20 miles about Tanzania's coast, an island with a long history and a rich cultural mix. When you approach touristic places, hotles or the beach on Zanzibar, you notice the huge number of male maasai, serving as security staff in hotels or just being beach boys, selling carvings, paintings, gems or their body. But most of them aren't real maasai or grew up on Zanzibar. Young men, mostly coming from mainland Tanzania, dress up as maasai to meet the expectations tourists from europe have, when they come to the african continent. False expectations, created by books and movies that paint a wrong picture of Africa and male africans, especially regarding the maasai tribe. This ongoing series documents these young men.

Born in Hamburg, Germany in 1965, Tobias Gambaro was raised in Kenya, Germany and Austria. He is a photographer, visual artist and media consultant whose work aims to capture the complexity of his subject by revealing an image of purity and simplicity to its viewer. „Photography is an encounter, a reproduction of the reality in a split second. It inspires and creates imagination, and may broaden horizons.“ Tobias Gambaro lives and works in Switzerland and Greece. Exhibitions in China, Korea, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland.