out of focus, blurry, colorful and very contrasted portrait of a healer from South Africa by Thom Pierce

Thom Pierce Sangoma

‘Sangoma’ is the name given to traditional healers who play an important role within many different sections of South African society. In rural communities they are many people’s first port of call in times of need and illness.

Through a combination of prayer, dance and medicine (Muti), Sangoma’s contact the ancestors for advice and prescribe natural remedies for illness, good fortune and physical improvement. To become a Sangoma is not simple. Chosen by their ancestors, the training and initiation can be long and arduous. The work is an emotional and physical commitment which, combined with western medicine, forms part of many people’s healthcare choices.

In recent years, Sangoma’s and institutions of western medicine have frequently worked together to define their separate roles and acknowledge the importance of each other within modern South African society. Sangoma’s are accepted in several denominations of the christian church, their diverse rituals and attire can be informed by their varying ethnicity and religious affiliation.

Monthly Photo Contest

Black & White Photography by Riccardo Comi
© Riccardo Comi

THEME: BLACK & WHITE Deadline: 30 November 2019

Regardless of genres, the black & white legacy left by the great masters of photography still inspires and encourages both amateur and professional photographers to work in black & white.

Be it in street, fashion, portrait, landscape, documentary or any other form of photography that celebrates the beauty and wealth of black & white photography: We want to be moved and inspired.

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1st Prize: $1000 · 2nd Prize: $600 · 3rd Prize: $400

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