Tribes of the Omo Valley

PhotographerBrent Stirton
PrizeBronze in Photojournalism / People/Personality
Entry Description

The unique, intact tribal cultures of the remote Omo Valley are all threatened by 3 new dams which the Ethiopian Government is building to supply hydro-electric power to Ethiopia's major cities. The dams will reduce the flow of the Omo River to one fifth of its volume and remove the flood plain which is so valuable to the Omo tribes for Agrarian purposes. Mass forced migration and the break-up of these ancient cultures is likely to be the result.

About Photographer

Brent Stirton is a senior staff photographer for the assignment division of Getty Images, New York. He specializes in documentary work and is known for his alternative approaches. He travels an average of ten months of the year on assignment. Brent work is published by: National Geographic Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, The Discovery Channel, Newsweek, The New York Times Magazine, The London Sunday Times Magazine, Le Express, Le Monde 2, GQ, Geo, Stern, CNN, and many other respected international titles. He also writes a blog for the Discovery Channel which regularly features pictures and stories from his travels. Brent also works for the Global Business Coalition against Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria. He has been a long time photographer for the World Wide Fund for Nature, shooting campaigns on sustainability and the environment. He also works for the Ford and Clinton Foundations, the Nike foundation and the World Economic Forum. Brent has received awards from the Overseas Press Club, the Frontline Club, the Deadline Club, Days Japan, P.O.Y, China International Photo Awards, the Lead Awards, Graphis, American Photography, American Photo and the American Society of Publication Designers as well as the London Association of Photographers. Brent has received 5 awards from the World Press Photo Foundation and has also received awards from the United Nations for his work on the environment and in the field of HIV. “As journalists we often have to find new ways to tell an old story. I believe in trying to tell that story in the most powerful way I can under the limited circumstance that time brings to any assignment. I am trying to be less concerned with who I am working for and more concerned about what I am doing with my time. This is crucial period in our history on this planet and I want to feel like I am working on issues that matter beyond the sensationalism of the 24 hour news cycle.“