Storytellers Update 7

A look into the eyes of Matsigenka youth, Javier.
Melanie Dizon
December 7, 2022

JAVIER ENRIQUE KEIMARI | songs of his youth

Javier is the son of Lola and Luciano whose family live in the community of Shipetiari. He is one of four children and their only son. He holds many teachings from his grandfather, including some traditional songs which he shares with us in this video.


Javier lives with his family along the 'Yanayacu', one of the many streams that traverse the community of Shipetiari. Amongst his three sisters, he is the oldest and only boy. They all speak with one another in their native Matsigenka language. Many an afternoon has been spent with Javier and family, and he has since become quite connected with our team and learning how to shoot with a digital camera!

Photo: Davis Torres/Xapiri Ground

He moved to the community of Shipetiari as a young boy where he lived with his grandfather and learned some songs amongst other things. He carries much of the traditional Matsigenka ways when it comes to hunting and foraging, medicinal plants, and arrow-making.

Photo: Davis Torres/Xapiri Ground

Photo: Davis Torres/Xapiri Ground

He continues to practice his newfound penchant for photography, a path we are walking with him together little by little. His personal insights into his community will serve as a valuable tool for the present and future generations.  Below are some of his first photos...

Photo: Javier Enrique Keimari ©2022

Photo: Javier Enrique Keimari ©2022

Photo: Javier Enrique Keimari ©2022

Photo: Javier Enrique Keimari ©2022

Stay tuned for more !


These original recordings and photography are an ongoing part of our many visits to the community. We hope that you continue to follow our progress with this long-standing project of art and storytelling, focused on connecting the youth with the oral traditions of their elders and living culture through creative workshops and relationship building.
This project is made possible through our partnership with SePerú; a non-profit organization dedicated to equal benefits and co-management of Peruvian Indigenous communities and their natural ecosystem.
Support this project so that we may continue to share and learn about the ancestral knowledge of the Matsigenka people.

Video Footage: Davis Torres, Melanie Dizon
Video edition: Melanie Dizon
Photography: Davis Torres, Javier Enrique Keimari

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