Capturing Visages & Mystery, Ethereal Portraits of the Women of Bali by Mark L Chaves
Chaves is a freelance writer and photographer based in Bali, Indonesia. He also provides consulting, training, and workshops in leadership, wellness, and software. Just prior to going independent, Mark was part of the award winning (best in Condé Nast, Spa Asia, SpaFinder) team as a Wellness Consultant with COMO Hotels and Resorts. He was based in Bali, Thailand, The Maldives, and Bhutan during his tenure. Mark is also an experienced technical manager that came through the ranks as a software engineer. He has over 20 years of experience in the Software and IT industry. Mark has worked in leadership roles for large companies such as IBM,Oracle, LA Fitness, Sony PlayStation. A fond love for sharing stories through writing and photography led Mark to be an active contributor for diaforlife, InBali.org, and Balipedia. Follow Mark’s photography portfolio on tumblr and eyeem. http://marklchaves.com
Beautiful, kind, nurturing, devoted, and devout—maybe the first characteristics that come to mind when attempting to describe the women of Bali. What does it mean to be a Balinese woman especially in the digital and globalised age?
The photographs in this series are a foray or exploration that tries to answer this question. The next five portraits are a subset of a larger project called Jegeg (beautiful in Balinese) that is a work still in progress.
The captions for each image have two parts. The first part represents one of the many facets of what it means to be a Balinese woman. The second part is the original title or contextual caption for the photograph.
This 2016 photo is of Ibu Pedande leading the first Otonan ceremony for a seven-month-old baby. The Balinese Otonan is celebrated every 210 days (seven months) according to the Balinese calendar. A Pedande is a Balinese high priest and part of the Balinese Hindu Brahman caste. Ibu Pedande was from a long line of priests from Keramas, Bali. She passed away early March 2017.
© Mark L Chaves