As introduced yesterday, a great annual festival took place in Douala this week-end. It is called the Ngondo festival and it gathers all the Sawa people (people from the Atlantic coast).
Many events have been surrounding this animist celebration dedicated to the "Jengu" or "Ondine", the gods from the Wouri river : dances from each tribes of the City, traditional fighting, a traditional Miss election, etc...
The climax of the celebration occured this morning when hundreds of thousand people are gathering to the river banks to watch the elected diver disappear under the water for 5 to 10 minutes (don't ask me how...) to collect the message from the ancestors in a large basket and bring it to the traditional chieves of Douala who will translate it to normal Human Being. According to the message, we'll know quite soon if 2007 will be a wealthy year or not...
According to what I understood (since the border between people, tribes, villages and suburbs are really complex), the chieves are ruling a local community. Each of them is protected by a kind of honorific guard during special events like this one and is living in a large house with a dedicated place to welcome ceremonies or visitors.
For instance, I met earlier in the morning, RenÚ Douala Manga Bell, prince of Bali, one of the many suburb in Douala downtown. I also discovered that Prince Manga Bell had a palace located in Douala itself and ornated with many symbols (lions, crocodiles, a kind of magic key, etc...). Each suburb has a kind of traditional chief getting his power from his father.
This character dressed with some Wouri grass and the traditional boubou is part of the official guard keeping the diver presented yeasterday safe. They really embody the ancient traditionnal spirit of this event.
Critiques | Translate
vincz (19099) 2006-12-05 3:25
Quel personnage! Difficile de croire avec ce costume qu'il fasse partie du service d'ordre! ce serait definitivement plus marrant si nos agents etaient habilles comme ca.
sam224 (6215) 2006-12-05 3:40
A very interesting portrait of this man in traditional clothes preparing for the ritual. Very good colours and interesting note together with the image.
I like the way you captured the magic of the moment,
Thanks for sharing
bantonbuju (51761) 2006-12-05 3:56
this is awesome, i could gaze at this man for hours trying to "digest" every detail of his clothes and all the decorations, what a "finding" this is, splendid, informative photo...
best wishes, j.
sebcz (2345) 2006-12-05 6:50
This is what a call a brillinat portrait work. Quality amazing, clear focus, plenty of nice details to be admired (such as the green plant in his hair).
Really good work!
DarkoG (8) 2006-12-05 10:37
EXcellent human study. Great shot with lots of felling on mans face. Blurred background works excellent here.
jaywalker (16095) 2006-12-05 12:12
Hi Steven, A superb portrait & you have captured the eyes very well, excellent colour & brilliant lighting finish of this shot, not so sure about the greenary around his head, great photo, kind regards Wilson.
Albrecht (11279) 2006-12-06 13:36
The same for this one;great portrait and very detailed and interesating to watch closely.
Thanks for sharing
gabrielpat (7163) 2006-12-06 15:15
une belle photo d'"anthropologie",ša fait plaisir de voir que les coutumes et traditions resistent encire.
- Copyright: Steven Le Vourc'h (Curioso) (9271)
- Genre: People
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2006-12-03
- Categories: Festivals
- Camera: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L USM IS, Digital RAW, Hama UV 77 mm
- Exposure: f/5.6, 1/400 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Travelogue: LIVING IN CAMEROON
- Theme(s): Traditional Costumes of Africa II [view contributor(s)]
- Date Submitted: 2006-12-05 2:56
- Favorites: 1 [view]