Dinka and Mundari warrior's corsets

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Jun 05, 2019    Joan Riera


In January 2018 the first male beaded corset was worn in a Mundari cattle camp, South Sudan since 1983. The application of Sharia Law in the whole of Sudan forced both Dinka and Mundari men and women to stop wearing these magnificent body adornments forever. Last Places team is trying with the complicity of the Mundari to bring back corsets in South Sudan.

We want to start our posting with this emotive moment because it explains in many ways what Last Places is about. We love tribal culture as a whole and we support and promote unique aesthetic ways all around the World. Anibal Bueno, founding member of Last Places brought a 3 colour corset to Mayom cattle camp of the Mundari tribe and Angelo, a Mundari bachelor decided to wore it…as his father and uncles used to wear it 35 years ago. It was such a magic emotive moment that the news expanded like wild fire in the dry savannah. One year later around 12 young men and women wear corsets in Mundari cattle camps from South Sudan.


Mundari and Dinka are mythical tribes of South Sudan. The black and white images of Brazilian photographer Sebastiao Salgado have become part of the collective imaginary and Australian photographer Angela Fisher captivated all of us in 1984 with her wonderful images of a disappearing world; young men and women wearing corsets made up of thousands of tiny glass beads in various colours.

Corsets were indicators of gender, age, wealth, and ethnic affiliations. The colours of the beads indicated the age of the wearer; young Mundari between 15-25 years-old would wear a corset made of red and black beads. The use of pink and purple were appropriated to a man between 25-30 years old while yellow beads were worn by wearers of over 30 years old and ready for marriage. Women’s corsets were different from those worn by men. They were of a looser, bodice style and when worn, women’s corsets appeared ample and hung from the neck like a large necklace.

Last Places has been supporting several Dinka and Mundari women that used to wear corsets when they were young and that learned from their mothers and grandmothers the art of making corsets. We are excited to see corsets coming back and what is more important, tribal people feeling proud of their unique cultural heritage.