Child of the North of Mali
A true child of the North of Mali. Seen in Tichlatt, a Moor village in the Cercle de Nara.
Photography is my all absorbing passion since childhood. There is great beauty in documenting life for later. Mali and Nara belong to the few places on this earth were I often forgot to take pictures because life was so fascinating and intense.
So I just lived, dreamed and did not think about later. Like that I did not miss out on great moments.
Mali has to be thanked.
Categories: Africa, Berber, Mali, People, Sahel, West Africa
Tags: children, Mali, Maure, Moors, Nara Villages. Cercle de Nara, North, Sahel, semi desert, Village, West Africa
A group of children in the village of Keybane Soninke
Many things have changed during the last ten years in Mali. With the construction of a tarred road Nara has come out of its isolation. There is cell phone reception and internet access now in Nara. A friend said to me the other day: “These pictures are beautiful memories and you must tell the stories that belong to them”. The stories can be told easily but the problem is to find the right angle and to link them to the present, since they are my memoirs from the past.
The two pictures show a group of children in the village of Keybane Soninke. The children in the villages of the “Cercle de Nara” can be called without exaggerating ” the greatest inventors on earth”. There was nothing to play with. At least not something that could be called a toy in a traditional or classical way. The contrast between a child raised in a first world country and a child raised in a small village in the Sahel could not be greater.
Extreme poverty creates extreme creativty. Anything could and would be turned into a toy, provided it was interesting enough and it was not needed by the adults anymore.
Is the scenario still the same today or has the arrival of technology als changed the life of the children in the villages. The only way to find out for me is to go back there!
The children in the village
Categories: Africa, Mali, Nara, Nature, People, Sahel, West Africa
Tags: Cercle de Nara, children, Education, Keybane Soninke, Mali, Nara, West Africa
A little girl all dressed up in a street in Nara
The little girl in the picture was my neighbour’s daughter. That day she was wearing a beautiful white and blue Western dress, matching the colors of the Sahel. The dress had been bought on the Nara market the day before. She had been attending a wedding with her parents, friends and neighbours.
Now that most of the festivities were over and the greatest heat of the day had faded, she enjoyed playing in the street all by herself.
What has become of her, I asked myself ? When going through my pictures I remember this moment clearly. I played with her for a while. Today she is a woman, may be married to a man in the Sahel, a wealthy trader or a farmer ? Still in Nara ? Or has a decision been made for her by her parents to allow her to go to school and get an education ?
Categories: Berber, People, Sahel, Street Life, Tradition, Wedding
Tags: Africa, children, girl, Mali, Nara, Sahel Village, Street Life, tradition, Traditional Wedding, West Africa