/ 2020 / Press / People/Personality

Last of the Mentawai Shamans

  • Prize
    Bronze in Press/People/Personality
  • Photographer
    Nele Ruyters & Kevin De Vree, Belgium

With most of the Mentawai community forced to abandon their traditional way of life through government intervention in the 1950’s and 1960’s, only a few Shamans remain a traditional, self sufficiënt life. They are the backbone of Mentawai culture and refuse to leave the forest, taking pride in preserving their culture and traditions. As they get older, life becomes increasingly difficult without the support from family, who all moved to government settlements years ago. With only a few of the Mentawai Shamans remaining a traditional way of life, a fascinating culture slowly disappears.