I was particularly drawn to study the Ethiopian people because of the aesthetic qualities they display in their culture and traditions. I decided to investigate their culture a little more closely to further understand their lifestyle.
In southern Ethiopia lies the Omo valley. Its inhabitants are semi-nomadic and heavily rely on honey and bee hives to sustain their way of life. This was an interesting fact for me to discover and links to my own interest in the honey bee. In particular the Bana people still live very traditional lifestyles, but for how much longer? The valley they rely on is under threat of flooding from plans to build a hydroelectric dam, which is much against the inhabitants’ wishes.They have already started to loose their livelihoods because of the river’s natural ebb and flow, but the addition of a dam would cause disastrous problems.
I feel that the Ethiopian people of Omo Valley stand as a symbol for the havoc we are wreaking and represent the hardship caused to lives as a result. If they are unable to maintain their traditional way of life, these people may be forced into cities, loosing their heritage and livelihood. Not only effected by the loss of their land, they would be greatly effected by the loss of the bees, which are a rich part of their culture and sustainability.
I will begin some designs to demonstrate these ideas.