In Principio Ethiopia

Designer: Sebastiao Salgado

This cup shows one of the 25 photographs of the reportage Sebastião Salgado took in the Yrga Cheffe region in Ethiopia in late 2004. It was previewed at Artissima 2005, at the Lingotto in Turin.
Ethiopia is coffee’s country of origin, where today one of the finest Arabicas in the world is produced. As it does in other countries, here too illycaffè purchases its coffee at source, rather than via international markets, paying the growers a sustainable price, to guarantee them a fair income.
After Brazil and India, Ethiopia is the third leg on the In Principio journey, a project stemming from the collaboration between illycaffè and the great humanist Brazilian photographer, who share an idea of sustainable development and wish to use images to narrate the work and lands of coffee growers.
Salgado’s black and white images also travel, across various media: books, shows, cups and the 2005 publicity campaign.
This third cup in the limited edition In Principio series celebrates life on the coffee plantations of Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee. Conceived as a collaboration between renowned humanist photographer Sebastião Salgado and illy, In Principio pays tribute to the men and women who grow coffee, and the countries which give us our coffee rituals and culture.
Sebastião Salgado is acknowledged as one of the world's greatest humanitarian and social photographers. All his work is in black and white and typically celebrates the equal dignity of all people and protests the violation of this basic right by wars, poverty and other injustices. Salgado is founder of the Terra Institute in Brazil, an educational and social project for reforestation and the ecological training of farmers. As part of this multi-annual project, year after year Salgado visits and photographs the various coffee-producing countries from which illy buys its raw materials. His journey has now arrived in Ethiopia, having already visited Brazil and India. 25 black and white images taken towards the end of 2004 by the great humanist photographer were previewed at Artissima 12 (Turin, Italy). The exhibition recounts the life of Ethiopian coffee growers working in the Yirgha Cheffe region. A limited-edition illy collection has also been made using one of Salgado's images as its inspiration, a typical house of Ethiopian coffee-growers.