Spirit & Strength
       
     
The Devoted
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
Gunung Batur
       
     
The Help
       
     
The Devoted
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Trader
       
     
The Opportunist
       
     
The Trader
       
     
The Devoted
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Temple
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Offering
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Devoted
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess
       
     
Stone
       
     
The Tenacious
       
     
The Strong
       
     
Stone
       
     
The Strong
       
     
The Strong
       
     
The Strong
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Medium
       
     
The Medium
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers
       
     
The Entrepreneurs
       
     
The Industrious
       
     
The Industrious
       
     
The Industrious
       
     
Spirit & Strength
       
     
Spirit & Strength

The quiet power of the women of Bali.

The Devoted
       
     
The Devoted

Women distribute offerings during a temple renovation ceremony.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A clan high priestess, ratu empu, asks the gods to bless a temple renovation. In Balinese culture, a priest or a priestess must perform such ceremonies at different stages of building construction.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A clan priestess, ratu empu, prepares herself before leading prayers at a ceremony for the opening of a new hotel in Kuta, Bali. In Balinese culture, a priest must ask the gods to bless the grounds at different stages of building construction.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A woman works behinds the scenes to keep the opening ceremonies running smoothly at a new hotel in Kuta, Bali. Hundreds of hand-made offerings are prepared by dozens of women over several days for extravagant Hindu events like these.

Gunung Batur
       
     
Gunung Batur

Mount Batur, an active volcano on the northern side of Bali, Indonesia.

The Help
       
     
The Help

A woman helps prepare the making of ceremony offerings in the household of the clan priestess (ratu empu) in Ubud, Bali. 

The Devoted
       
     
The Devoted

A woman prepares daily offerings of flowers and incense in a small shrine above the counter in her roadside store. At the end of each day in Bali, Indonesia, women ask spirits to bless their homes, shops, and businesses.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A priestess prepares plumeria blossoms for a ceremony at her home in Denpasar.

The Trader
       
     
The Trader

A woman sells handmade banten, or Hindu offerings, at a morning market in Ubud, Bali. Although women traditionally fold and create their own offerings each day, others earn a living selling them to households that prefer to buy.

The Opportunist
       
     
The Opportunist

A small street vendor prepares skewers of chicken to travelers on the go. Hard-working women of all ages in Bali undertake many – often surprisingly difficult – kinds of work in order to support their families.

The Trader
       
     
The Trader

A woman sells knives from a basket on the side of a busy street in Ubud, Bali. Hard-working women of all ages undertake many – often surprisingly difficult – kinds of work in order to support their families.

The Devoted
       
     
The Devoted

Preparing rice offerings before a temple ceremony in Ubud, Bali. Hundreds of intricate, one-time use offerings like these are exclusively prepared by women in Balinese culture, and can take days of hard work and many skilled hands.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A priestess prepares hand-cut coconut fronds for an upcoming temple ceremony. Although many neighboring women will help create the majority of the offerings, only she has the training and experience to produce the more specialized crafts.

The Temple
       
     
The Temple

Rattan and cloth and stone at a Balinese Hindu temple.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A female brahmana high priestess, ratu pedanda, at her home outside of Tabanan, Bali.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A female brahmana high priestess, ratu pedanda, at her home outside of Tabanan, Bali.

 

The Offering
       
     
The Offering

Beautiful banten offerings on temple grounds in Bali, Indonesia.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A brahmana high priestess prepares herself before a mass cremation ceremony in Bali, Indonesia. 

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A brahmana high priestess prepares herself before a mass cremation ceremony in Bali, Indonesia.

The Devoted
       
     
The Devoted

Women sprinkle holy water on effigies of their loved ones at a cremation ceremony near Tabanan, Bali. Because of the high cost of cremations, villages will often pool resources and perform a single mass cremation like these.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A brahmana high priestess reaches for flowers and holy water at a cremation ceremony, with help of an assistant.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

A brahmana high priestess leads prayers at a cremation ceremony in a sudden rainstorm at a home outside of Tabanan, Bali.

The Priestess
       
     
The Priestess

After a ceremony, a brahmana high priestess drives with her assistants to the next event. On particularly auspicious days, a priest may be required to travel at any hour of the day or night to attend several ceremonies in many different locations.

Stone
       
     
Stone

The jagged edges of hand-cut sandstone at a rock quarry near Gianyar, Bali.

The Tenacious
       
     
The Tenacious

A woman pauses during the planting of a new rice field in Bali, Indonesia. Balinese women of all ages often undertake surprisingly difficult tasks in order to support their families.

The Strong
       
     
The Strong

Portraits of two Balinese women: One carries slabs of stone uphill from her husband's quarry, and a rice field worker. 

Stone
       
     
Stone

Slabs of hand cut stone wait to be carried up to the road from the riverbed outside of Gianyar, Bali. 

The Strong
       
     
The Strong

A woman carries stone slowly from the riverbed up to the road at the top of the cliff, where it can be picked up by buyers. Although each load can weigh approximately 25 kg and each stone sells for about 15000 IDR ($1 USD), the amount sold can vary greatly from day to day.

The Strong
       
     
The Strong

A woman carries stone slowly from the riverbed up to the road at the top of the cliff, where it can be picked up by buyers. Although each load can weigh approximately 25 kg and each stone sells for about 15000 IDR ($1 USD), the amount sold can vary greatly from day to day.

 

The Strong
       
     
The Strong

A woman takes a short break from carrying slabs of hand-cut stone up from the riverbed.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A household's dog sleeps next to the handmade baskets prepared by the women of the family.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

Baskets are a staple of Balinese society, holding everything from clothing to fruit in daily life. A mother and her two daughters hand cut and weave bamboo strips, earning approximately 7000 IDR ($0.50 USD) per basket.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A young girl shaves strips of bamboo for weaving into baskets. Each basket sells for about 7000 IDR ($0.50 USD).

The Medium
       
     
The Medium

A mixture of deities sits on the personal altar of a Hindu balian (spiritual healer) near Denpasar, Bali. 

The Medium
       
     
The Medium

A spiritual healer, jero, advises a family while in a trance state at her home near Denpasar, Bali. Spiritual mediums command such respect, families come from many villages and will wait several hours to a consult with her on deeply personal matters. 

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A measuring tape and shears adorns a side table at a sarong weaving company near Gianyar, Bali.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A woman weaves traditional ikat sarongs on a simple loom near Gianyar, Bali.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A woman weaves traditional ikat sarongs using simple machinery near Gianyar, Bali.

The Weavers
       
     
The Weavers

A woman weaves traditional ikat sarongs using simple machinery near Gianyar, Bali.

 

The Entrepreneurs
       
     
The Entrepreneurs

A young girl helps her mother dry fresh sticks of incense, one of Bali's most ubiquitous items. This family invested approximately $3500 USD into a modern machine which quickly produces dozens of sticks in a minute. In contrast, the average Balinese worker earns approximately $230 USD per month. 

The Industrious
       
     
The Industrious

Two farm workers plant onions on their family field, which sits inside the crater of Mount Batur. Many families like these risk settling within the zone of the active volcano in trade for the fertile soil and opportunity to farm crops. 

The Industrious
       
     
The Industrious

Two women harvest cabbages beneath the shadow of Mount Batur. Many families like these risk settling within the zone of the active volcano in trade for the fertile soil and opportunity to farm crops. 

The Industrious
       
     
The Industrious

A farm inside the crater of Mount Batur. Many families like these risk settling within the zone of the active volcano in trade for the fertile soil and opportunity to farm crops.