How Jason Florio's portraits from West Africa were made

helen jones-florio
Jul 31, 2013 1:10PM

'Herouna Tonkara with his white horse' was taken whilst on a 930km walk around the small West African country of The Gambia, in 2009, with his wife, Helen. The portraits of village chiefs and elders became an award-winning series - 'Silafando - a gift to you on behalf of my journey'. Jason would make the traditional offering of kola nuts to each village chief every night after walking (with two donkeys and a cart to carry their camera and camping gear). This would ensure a welcome and protection of the chief, during their stay in the village.

'Swimming Horses' was taken on a more recent journey - River Gambia Expedition-1000km source-sea African odyssey' - when Jason and Helen made the first fully recorded navigation of the River Gambia, from its source deep in the Fouta Djallon Highlands of Guinea to the rivers end, where it meets The Atlantic Ocean in The Gambia. Traveling, at first, over land and then canoeing for over 1100km on the River Gambia, Jason took photographs of the people they encountered, who live and work around one of Africa's last major free-flowing rivers.

helen jones-florio
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