Measured life in the Solomon Islands

Measured life in the Solomon Islands

1Locals still use the same canoe, hollowed out of tree trunks, like their ancestors, in the countryside, the moon is used as a calendar, and the ocean continues to largely determine the fate of the islanders.

32-year-old French photographer Fabien Astra (Fabien Astre) spent a year documenting life on the Pacific Islands south of the equator, and his pictures show how truly magical and tempting they are.

He says: "Regardless of which of the more than 1000 islands that make up an archipelagic country, you are, you are guaranteed to feel in such an extremely distant world that you hardly ever felt like this before."

"Despite the diversity of the population, which speaks more than 70 languages, all residents of the Solomon Islands still have one thing in common - they are supported by the ocean."

Astra investigated the emerald colors of the island’s lagoon where John F.Kennedy was thrown away during World War II, and bright marketplaces, where tent owners sometimes sleep next to the goods for a whole week. Below, he tells the story, in words and pictures, about a place that is truly timeless.

32-year-old French photographer Fabien Astra spent a year documenting life in the Solomon Islands, where residents travel by canoe, hollowed out of tree trunks. Aster says: "The process of making canoes like this for the people of Solomon Islands looks incredibly easy ... but the view can be deceiving."2

Astra says: “The combination of dark skin and blond hair has puzzled scientists over the years. Although Solomon Islanders can tell you that blond hair is the result of exposure to the sun or a diet rich in fish, the truth is that the islanders have their own unique "blond" gene.3

Most of the rural inhabitants of Solomon Islands live in traditional houses built entirely from scrap materials. Sago palm is used for the roof, while bamboo, pandanus and other types of wood are used for the rest of the house.The cooking area is separated from the rest of the house.4

Astra says: “Solomon Islands witnessed many hostilities between Japanese and American troops during World War II. The heavy story is still alive, and the relics, on land and at sea, are reminiscent of past battles. For example, ships, aircraft and tanks are abundant and continue to be found here. In the photo, Kennedy Island, named after Lieutenant John F. Kennedy, where he and his colleagues had been washed ashore after their ship, PT109, was destroyed by a Japanese destroyer on August 2, 1943. ”5

“In the countryside, the islanders use the moon as a calendar,” says Astra, “and the days of the week mean nothing. The marine environment largely determines the fate of the islanders, as it always has been. ” The picture shows young children playing in an old car.6

“This road, connecting the city of Guizo in the south with the community of Sayeragi in the north, runs along the coast past numerous small villages. The only danger on the road is falling coconuts, ”says Astra.7

"When the Spanish explorer Alvaro Mendanya de Neira discovered the Solomon Islands, he believed that he had found the source of wealth for King Solomon, because he discovered signs of gold,"- explains Astra. Today, the treasure of the Solomon Islands are almost 1000 islands, surrounded by beautiful reefs and lagoons.8

The picture shows a Melanesian girl. The term applies to the inhabitants of Melanesia, which consists of four countries: Vanuatu, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.9

During his stay on the island, a talented photographer captured this heart-warming image of mischievous smiling children.10

“The local market is full of tropical fruits, vegetables and fish - everything is fresh and everything organic,” says Astra. “Villagers from neighboring islands arrive every morning by boat to occupy their small outlets in the shade of tall trees and sell their crops.” Those who arrive from afar can spend a whole week on the market, spending the night next to their goods. The best day of the market is Friday. For most families, the money earned here is the only source of income. ”11

"The city of Gizo, on the island of Gizo, is the capital of the Western Province," explains Astra. With a population of 6154 inhabitants (according to 2005 data), it is the second largest city in the country.In recent history, the island of Guizo was settled by immigrants from Kiribati and many other islands. Therefore, its population is very diverse, because of which the ownership of local resources is quite difficult.12

Time to play: When you live in Solomon, you have a lot of time to kill. Islanders can be seen playing cards with coins.13

View of the island of Kolombangar. "In the local language, Kolombangar means" King of Water, "explains Astra. With about 80 rivers and streams flowing along its sides, Kolombangara never feels thirst. At the same time, nearby islands are affected by drought.14

On the island of Olazan, like all the others, there is white sand, reefs for scuba diving and no crowds of people. Far off is Kennedy Island.15

Kolombangara Island is almost perfectly round and about 15 kilometers across. It is a stratovolcano, which reaches a height of 1770 meters. An exhausting and memorable trip from the sea to the summit takes two days.16

The Shortland Islands are a group of islands belonging to the Western Province of the Solomon Islands, named after John Shortland.They are located in the extreme northwest of the country, not far from the island of Bougainville, which is part of Papua New Guinea.

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  • Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands

    Measured life in the Solomon Islands