Where beauty comes from the heart

The Omo Valley, cradle of mankind and source of the Blue Nile, is the land of the Mursi of Ethiopia.

The women wear large labrets, or lip ornaments, made of clay or wood. They share this unusual custom with the Kayapo people of the Brazilian Xingu. The men draw intricate designs on their bodies, which they cover with a thin layer of clay like genuine living canvasses. While the women cultivate millet, the men take care of raising livestock.

The Mursi recognise no central political authority or real tribal chieftain, but they greatly value the opinions of some of the men, usually those aged over 50.