Day 5– Wutai

#KantaTaiwan Day 5, journal Saturday 26 May on the southern hills of Taiwan, Wutai

  1. Conversations with Moo Moo (Grandfather in Rukai) Explaining the important significance of the head dress.
  2. The hand that caught the eagle, Palipilipi, a great hunter, and now elder of the community. Wealth of knowledge and also the humble farmer. Previously rukai language teacher, we've seen him watching athletics on TV numerous times. It must be the challenge & achievement he misses.
  3. The daily walk through the village, but this time full load with both cameras. I'm carrying the #8intrepid mobile studio kit.
  4. Walkthrough village is never just a walk. But many stopovers to find out the daily events and happenings. Here at Aunts place, given bunch of laicis and other, before being sent on our way with sometimes errands and messages to pass on. 
  5. Packed both cameras to head down Shensan, next village where the wedding is held. Between 3 of us, about 25kg load, walking the path.
  6. Native Library, beside the town hall and other gov facilities, amazed at gov effort, and to a certain degree, the community, having their own autonomy over themselves. 
  7. It's literally mountains rising from the ground. Majestic views of the valley and rolling hills, glorious skies. These southern hills seems remote, but are still accessible. 
  8. We were given ceremonial vest, in order to get access to the wedding grounds.
  9. Wedding- engagement ceremony, the village has turned out in their best. I really love their hand weaved back packs.
  10. Heard there were 4 different entourage that has come today, bearing gifts, the bride comes from the noble family, here a live 'Babui' (wild boar/ pig) on offer. 
  11. Pack hall, the ceremonies started at 630 am and ends at 5pm with a 2 hour communal dance ritual (ends early because the mosquitoes come out at 6)
  12. Bride's mother, the bride and her 2 sisters (pictured here) get carried on a 'litter' (known in Chinese as kiao) to the engagement venue through the village.
  13. Modern day steed, as the entourage make its way through the village, outriders clear the way for the procession.
  14. Communal Dance Ritual where the entire guests participate in a circular, hand-joined dance ritual, it goes on for two hours. 
  15. Setup kamra #1interchange at the end of their ceremonies, in order not to interfere with their rituals. Had an hour window to make portraits of selected guests.
  16. Important moment in the process, to let the sitter witness their own image appear, onto a physical form of a print.
  17. Spent the evening with Peresang, dinner was paid by her brother, and a lengthy portrait session. Coincidences with Peresang has turned out to be more than a blessing, we can't be more thankful for the wealth of knowledge and inspiration she has shared with us.

The community, social structure, and relationships, although simplistically projected as a tribe, but in its entirety, very complex, between generations, assimilations & associations, with duality personalities (sometimes multiple) facing the challenges of balancing identities #KantaPortraits #BeyondBorders #EdgesofMalaysia

1. Conversations with Moo Moo

2. Palipilipi, a great hunter

3. daily walk village

4. stopovers

5. Packed both cameras

6. Native Library

7. Majestic views

8. ceremonial vest

9. Wedding- engagement ceremony

10. 'Babui' (wild boar/ pig) on offer

11. Pack hall

12. Bride's entourage

13. Modern day steed

14. Communal Dance Ritual

15. Setup kamra #1interchange

16. witness their own image

17. evening with Peresang