Justin Fornal
Justin Fornal
Explorer, Author, Extreme Athlete

Great Islay Swim

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On July 23rd, 2017 Fornal led an 8 day circumnavigational swim of Isaly, Scotland with fellow Explorers Club member Chad Anderson.  The expedition was sponsored by Single Cask Nation and Visit Scotland.  

https://scotchwhisky.com/magazine/latest-news/15406/explorers-swim-islay-coast-for-looted-malt/

https://www.greatislaysiwm.com

https://christopherbeauchamp.com/islayswim/1

 

 
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RWANDA: IMINGONGO

An expedition to rural Rwanda to work with the Kakira Imingongo Women’s Cooperative. Imingongo is a traditional Tutsi art form that uses cow dung and paints made from traditional soils and clay. Sponsored by National Geographic

https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/04/imigongo-cow-dung-art-rwandan-widows-recover-genocide/

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UGANDA: BARKCLOTH

As part of the larger FABRICS expedition the team traveled to Masaka, Uganda to document the production of a textile made from the bark of the mtube tree.  This is a sacred ritualistic fabric fro the Baganda people. Sponsored by Andrew Freedman Museum 

 

https://vimeo.com/213591787

password: bark

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TANZANIA: HADZA

The expedition team lived with one of the world’s last groups of hunters and gatherers living in a small settlement on Lake Eyasi. The goal was to document elements of everyday Hadza life, including the process of making poisonous arrows using the sap of the desert rose.

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TANZANIA: ALBINISM & WITCHCRAFT

Over three separate voyages Fornal and his team have investigated the kidnapping and murder of albino children for usage in mchawi witchcraft.  The team is working with officials to offer a long-term solution to end the practice.

https://www.christopherbeauchamp.com/Albinos&Witchcraft/

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NEW MEXICO: APACHE RITES

Fornal worked with the descendants of Geronimo on the Mescalero Apache Reservation for deep access to Apache initiation rituals including the Crown Dancers. Sponsored by VICE Media 

https://www.go90.com/videos/3Ng0kLf2ogb

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OAXACA: THE LAST PURPLE SNAIL DYERS

Part of the larger FABRICS expedition series, Fornal ventured to Oaxaca Mexico to work with the last Mixtec snail dyers as well as Zapotec rug weavers who dye fabric using cochineal, indigo, clays, and fruits. Lecture of findings delivered at the Bruce Museum. Article coming out in National Geographic Traveler December 2017 Sponsored by National Geographic & Andrew Freedman Home

https://vimeo.com/194130644

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HAITI: FACES OF VODOU

Fornal and his team ventured to Port Au Prince, Haiti to work with leaders of the vodou community. The goal was to document lesser known rituals and sacred locations.  Sponsored by SONY Software.

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YEMEN: LEGACY OF QAT

Fornal spent 2 weeks traveling throughout Yemen attending qat chews and visiting qat markets.  The intoxicating plant plays a complex role in Yemen’s socio-economic identity.

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VIETNAM: GIANT WATER BUG JUICE

Fornal ventured to Northern Vietnam to seek out the last producers of ca coung, a condiment made from the thoracic exudate of the giant water bug. Fornal built off of the research of Dr. V.Q. Manh, professor of entomology at University of Hanoi.