Tabar Island is some 50 miles from New Ireland it is very isolated and the people of Tabar live as their forebears had. No electricity, no readily available water, none of the normal conveniences which we expect in Australia–not even radio contact.
After a century of occupation and Christianity they are reclaiming their culture.
We had arrived to photograph a malagan.
This malagan ceremony was a thirty pig feast to honour the deceased parents of the chief and to enact the history of the Island. People come from the neighboring islands to perform traditional ritual and dances and songs. Also to be involved in creating the many elaborate and beautifully carved sculptures and masks which were to feature in the maligan.
As I shared in this amazing ceremony over the next four days I was fascinated by the mixture of their Christianity and the old ways. This amalgamation was strongly in my mind whilst I was photographing the ritual slaying of pigs. I saw that the two cultures had found a way of coexisting which was not hierarchical but bonded.
These images are about my way of expressing this bonding.