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Robert McPherson March 10, 2014

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Mongolia.

Kazakhs building a Ger in Mongolia, 2012

Robert McPherson (b.1982, Norway) began freelancing for Norway’s Aftenposten national newspaper in 2011. He is a member of Metaphor Images, an international documentary photographer`s collective based in Australia. Robert studied for a Bachelor of Communications at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia. He graduated in 2006 with an honours degree focusing on documentary photography. During his studies he traveled to Kyrgyzstan and has since continued his long term documentary project on nomads in Central Asia. His work from the Kibera slum in Nairobi Kenya was part of an exhibition at Visa Pour l`Image in 2011. He has been nominated for the Picture of the Year Award in Norway for 2013 .

About the Photograph:

“During summertime nomads move camp more frequently in order to find pasture land for their animals. During wintertime they live in houses built of mud and wood. This image shows a moment during the set up of a new camp in summer. When I turned around I was struck by this Kazakh girl entering the unfinished Yurt (Ger) while her parents were taking a  break from construction. Kazakhs are descendants of Turkic and Mongol tribes and are pastoral nomads of the steppes of Kazakhstan and Mongolia. Most of the vast expanses of these countries are semi-arid land that is desolate and frozen in the winter and turns to lush, green meadow in mid-spring. The steppes are invaluable pastureland for the sheep, horses, cattle, and camels that are essential to the Kazakh people.
The ancestors of modern-day Kazakhs were nomadic or semi-nomadic, and many of their customs reflect that lifestyle. Nowadays, people live mostly in cities and villages, although some still lead an agricultural life. The nomadic culture is under threat from these changes in priorities.”