My blog » Photographer Tanya Lake

Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea . In the remote highlands of Mount Bosavi, accessed only by helicopter, a tribe celebrates over their land being listed as a protected UNESCO world heritatage site. With Malaysian logging companies rapidly felling old growth forests, this protection means that for the Wabimissen tribe of Mt Bosavi, their traditional lifestlye may continue for now.

Photographs by Tanya Lake / World Wildlife Foundation .


A man prepares for an all night village singsing to welcome the World Wildlife Foundation guests who have listed their land as UNESCO protected. He will sing his family tree back for generations, with each member mimicked in song as an animal totem. When he sings his own recently deceased father he will begin to weep.

Women of PNG are seen carrying heavy loads across their foreheads and backs in traditional woven Bilum bags. Here a woman carries a young child.

Drumming and dancing continues throughout the night.

A teenage girl smiles as she shows off the cowrie shell necklaces that are her dowry. Behind is a picture of The Last Supper. PNG is a mixture of Christianity and traditional animist beliefs.

A woman with deep scars along her cheeks. The rate of domestic violence in PNG is extremely high.

Women return to Wabimissen with Taro they have collected which will be ground into a flour.

Crocodile Cult. Along the upper reaches of the Sepik River, young men are initiated with deep cuts along their body that resemble the skin of the crocodile. They must swim in the (crocodile infested) river and undergo scarring to become initiated as a man in the village.

The villagers of Wabimissen.

A young girl plays with her possum tail toy.

The villagers of Wabimissen in front of their new longhouse.

Caught in the swirl of a sing sing.