THE BUSHMAN AND THE PRAYING MANTIS
The Bushman or San people of Africa have a fascination for the Praying Mantis and love this small insect. The mantis created many things and appears in numerous myths. He can be foolish, wise or helpful, The Koi San people of Southern Africa worshipped the praying mantis. They believed that he gave them words and fire.
As they are also small people they appreciate the Mantis’ place in nature. Although, whenever they walk on the African landscape and feel ’the animal eye upon them’, it was the small Mantis that they worship and neither of the Big Five. They converse and weave stories about the Mantis, see things through its eyes and learn to value the little things in life.
The photographer saw the special relationship between the Bushman and the Praying Mantis. He finds progression in the four images:
Photo 1: The Bushman is in a praying position with respect towards the Mantis, maybe praying for something, like in front of a god.
Photo 2: The Bushman is standing next to the Mantis, trying to get authority and to stand on his own, emphasizing the man’s poverty, his loneliness, his incapabilities and dependance.
Photo 3: The Bushman with the Mantis on his shoulder imitate his ove for the holy insect.
Photo 4: In this photo the Mantis is so close to the Bushman you can almost feel the warmth of the relationship.