When missionaries and traders began to push European dress upon the Namibian people, they rebelled, using cattle-horned headdresses and explosively colorful gowns to project their proud identities.

Jim Naughten is a photographer based in London. His book, Conflict and Costume, was released in March by Merrell. In his photography series, Naughten portraits the ‘Herero people’ aka today’s remaining nomadic tribes — Naughten, set against a country of contrasts and paradoxes, Namibia that he describes as being ‘one of unforgiving intensity but also of silent witness’, subsequently let the past to speak. For him the Herero story, illustrated by the amazing costumes and uniforms, is one of survival, pride and defiance, provide the Conflict and Costume significance — the images haul at something deeper (pride, strength and a wonderfully unique sense of fashion).

All images © Jim Naughten

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