Shamanism from Werner Forman Archive

An Assiniboine hand drum painted with a spirit design reminiscent of 'hallucinatory' images, in this case almost certainly the consequence of weakness and partial delirium resulting from fasting and thirsting ©Werner Forman Archive
Werner Forman Archive press release – 16 August, 2018.

Many ancient peoples had holy men, called Shamans, to help them understand and engage with both the ‘spirit world’ and the actual world.

Interestingly, some practices, like going into a trance, or entering an animal’s mind, as a spirit guide, seem remarkably prevalent globally.

Shamanism is based on the premise that the visible world is pervaded by invisible forces or spirits which affect the lives of the living.

Werner Forman photographed many artefacts relating to Shamanism worldwide.

©Werner Forman Archive