Lower Omo Valley

The Omo Valley, home of Lucy, the oldest known Homo sapiens, is home to over 500,000 indigenous, tribal people. These indigenous tribes have been painting their bodies with pulverized minerals for millennia’s. The paintings are used to designate position, for ritual, to ward off illness, to attract the opposite sex, to associate with family, a tribe or an animal, and to impress tourists.

Along with body paintings, the Mursi tribe, also have a long history of decorative scarring and piercing. Both men and woman pierce their ears and lips with large discs. Mursi woman used to commonly pierce and stretch their lower lip for a plate.

The Valley is located in southwestern Ethiopia, eastern South Sudan and around Lake Turkana in north Kenya.