GANVIE, SONS OF THE LAKE

Ganvié is located on Lake Nokoué, south of Benin. The city stands on the waters of the lake, supported by small islets that make up a series of bustling and chaotic channels. It has its origin in the 18th century, when the Tofi people took refuge in the middle of the lake to flee from the slaves of the Fon ethnic group. The Fon religion forbade them to attack over water.

In this aquatic labyrinth, people move in rowing boats, they do not allow motor boats because they scare their fish and pollute the waters. They live off fishing, and every morning in the floating market, a parade of women approaches in colorful boobies and in their rickety canoes loaded with fruit or vegetables. The morning cleaning is done in the lake, the children learn to row before they walk, and religious festivals and voodoo dress their inhabitants in white. For the photographer it is an irresistible place, despite the difficulties of taking photos. It is a lake world that still treasures the magic of black Africa full of life, color and mystery.