The people in these photographs are from some of the 34 indigenous communities in the remotest parts of the world that Jimmy Nelson worked to make his second book about the strength and beauty of these cultures, Jimmy Nelson: Homage to Humanity.
The exhibition of the same name opens today (Wednesday, 19 Sept) at Atlas Gallery, in London W1. In both the exhibition and the book, the British-born photographer pays tribute to the thirty-four communities he encountered while travelling across five continents, from the Sharchop in the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan to the Mundari in South Sudan.
His first book about indigenous peoples, Before They Pass Away (2013), was a bestseller and helped spark a global debate. Jimmy Nelson: Homage to Humanity, extends both the artist’s practice but also pushes the limits of technology, as he introduces readers to his subjects, through interviews, background material and then, via a mobile app triggered by the photographs in the book, behind-the-scenes 360 films shot on location.
Nelson’s photographs draw on each group’s traditions and rituals to capture their striking character and particular relationship with their environment. His powerful, idealized images have served to create an international platform in the form of the Jimmy Nelson Foundation, established in 2016, to connect people across the world to discover each other’s diverse cultures.