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Saturday, November 10 2012 @ 10:22 AM EST
Papua New Guinea
 
I spent two weeks during the peak Sing-Sing season in early August this year to capture what National Geographic calls one of the top three cultural events in the world. I have wanted to go to PNG for over 20 years to see the native tribes in their traditional costumes and experience what it was like to encounter them face to face. The Sing-Sing's have gone on for over 50 years now to bring together the truly diverse tribes of PNG into a central stage to peacefully demonstrate their unique offerings and way of life. It would be nice if the world practiced this a little more!! Anyway....here are some of the images I captured while there and hope you enjoy.
 
On our first night outside of Port Moresby, we stayed on the north-central coast of PNG in a village called Wewak.   This was the sunset after we arrived at the hotel looking across the Bismark Sea.
 
Wewak Sunset
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Sep 06, '12 01:12PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 05:27AM
Views 52 / Comments 0
 
 
Cruising the Sepik
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sun Aug 05, '12 05:10PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:44AM
Views 115 / Comments 0
 
 
Our village homestay on the Sepik
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Sep 06, '12 11:11AM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:48AM
Views 48 / Comments 0
 
In many tribes along the Sepik, young men eventually go through a 2 month initiation to manhood.  They are restricted in a large Spirit House during this time with one of the primary events being the application of tiny cuts across the back and shoulders to resemble crocodile scales.  Apparently, as one would image, this is very painful.   He has some natural cream applied to it in this image for healing, but was very proud of this.   I was the only person  on the tour capable of seeing him as I was the only man on the tour.  Women are not allowed in the Spirit House.
 
Crocodile Initiation
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sun Aug 05, '12 08:14PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:44AM
Views 53 / Comments 0
 
 
Elderly River Tribesman at Crocodile Festival
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Tue Aug 07, '12 01:30PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:44AM
Views 49 / Comments 0
 
One of the primary features of many tribes is to portray intimidation to scare off other tribes.   This one won the prize for me at the Crocodile Festival with his headdress and display.  In addition, he was one of the very few locals who was almost as big as I was (6'1" and big), so that added to the dramatics.   He was not much on smiling either, but his tribe certainlhy had the most colorful face paintings of the river tribes.
 
Does this intimidate you?
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Tue Aug 07, '12 02:37PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 05:26AM
Views 55 / Comments 0
 
 
Enga Tribesman applying makeup
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Aug 09, '12 01:13PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:44AM
Views 52 / Comments 0
 
 
Hagen Tribal Dance
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Aug 09, '12 03:41PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:46AM
Views 60 / Comments 0
 
 
Lido de Papua New Guinea
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Aug 09, '12 05:19PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:46AM
Views 46 / Comments 0
 
 
Asaro Mudmen of PNG
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Aug 09, '12 03:34PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:47AM
Views 48 / Comments 0
 
 
Omo Masali tribe of Simbu - Skeleton Tribe
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Thu Aug 09, '12 04:11PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:48AM
Views 39 / Comments 0
 
 
Hagen Women at Mt Hagen Sing-Sing
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Fri Aug 10, '12 03:23PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:46AM
Views 41 / Comments 0
 
 
Eleborate Headdresses
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Fri Aug 10, '12 01:56PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 05:26AM
Views 45 / Comments 0
 
 
The Grace of Hagen, PNG
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sat Aug 11, '12 01:31PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:47AM
Views 44 / Comments 0
 
 
PNG Version of Mercury
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sat Aug 11, '12 03:39PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 05:26AM
Views 57 / Comments 0
 
I just got back today from Papua New Guinea in one of the more challenging trips I have ever taken. I wanted to at least get this in today for this week's challenge as seems quite appropriate.   The highlight of the trip was the Mt Hagan Sing Sing Festival that is held each year for over 50 years.  Although there are still pockets of tribes still practicing and living in their traditional ways, the festivals bring the tribes together to "strut their stuff" amd perform their local dances while dressed natively.   The show this year was risky with elections occuring at the same time and prone to violence.  Still...over 54 tribes showed up and this image represents one of the more famous tribes from the Taris village.  These men, called Wigmen, practice an art of maintaining wigs and showing them...more on this later.  This was one of the most fascinating cultural activities that I have witnessed and recommend for all to see.
 
Huli Wigman - Mt Hagen Sing-Sing
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sat Aug 11, '12 04:10PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 05:26AM
Views 109 / Comments 1
 
 
The Chief
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sat Aug 11, '12 02:13PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:47AM
Views 72 / Comments 0
 
 
The Man from Pimaga
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Sat Aug 11, '12 03:50PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:47AM
Views 45 / Comments 0
 
 
Hey Dad(s), Can I get your advice?
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Mon Aug 13, '12 03:10PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:46AM
Views 61 / Comments 0
 
One of the cultural wonders of the Huli tribe from Tari is their wigs.   At a certain age, they attend the "university" to grow their hair out for 18 months.  The hair would be consistently attended too by a local hairdresser to style it in the appropriate manner.  And..the hair was never washed during this time.  After 18 months, the hair is carefully cut off the scalp to retain the shape and ready for wear later during ceremonies as a wig.
 
Wig University of Tari
Photograph © Richard P Schoettger
Captured Tue Aug 14, '12 12:56PM
Posted Thu Sep 06, '12 04:48AM
Views 41 / Comments 0
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