Welcome to the world of the adventurer!
50 years of expeditions around the planet!
Travel with Hubert around our small, beautiful Earth.
On this page you will find many photos of the expeditions that my husband, Hubert Matysek, had made in his "young" years. But even today, Hubert and I still travel to many countries in the Far East and visit "old" friends and their families.
Hubert has produced over 80 documentary films. He was more behind a 16mm camera than he had taken pictures. That is also the reason why you do not see Hubert in photos so often. Unfortunately, the few slides from the 1960s are no longer available. That's a pity!
Nevertheless, there are fabulous shots that Hubert and I want to share with you ...
Let's go on a small world trip...
Previously, Hubert presented his documentary films in large event halls. Many travel magazines and newspapers reported about him.
Hubert in his office on the island of Helgoland 1971. He showed proudly his travels, which he had already made in the 1960s up to this date! ( In the foreground: his red macaw parrot "Jockel")
Hubert with his professional camera , here: Thailand, Seychelle, Papua Newguinea, Bali, Komodo Island, Brasil, South Seas,Tonga, Yap, Polynesia, Easter Island, India, Japan, Marrocco, Egypt, Tierra de Fuego, Argentina ... and last, but not least Helgoland, his home.
Bali - Indonesia
At the age of eighteen, Hubert was lying in his bed at night, looking at the ceiling where he had a world map. He wanted to explore our small planet Earth and his dream was always to travel to the small Sunda Island in the Indonesian Sea:
Bali, "the Island of gods and demons"
In 1966 he joined the great journey that took him across several countries, because of course there were no direct flights in those years. In Bali he landed with a small machine with braking parachutes! The airfield consisted only of a hut and little Balinese girls in traditional clothes greeted him with a coconut. What a time! Hubert fell in love with this island from the first minute, Indonesia at all. The Balinese culture is still unique in this world today. From the very beginning, he was looking for contact with the locals. Open-hearted they accepted Hubert. Doors and gates were opened for him. He still has his friends in the princely families, among the artists, the priests, but also in the common people and the farmers. And his friends and their children, even grand-children, have become my friends too. Hubert experienced the most beautiful festivals, extreme ceremonies full of magic and made beautiful films.
In the first year, he even became acquainted with the former president of Indonesia, R.A. Soekarno. Bali became Hubert's home. And I'm so grateful that I was able to live with him there for so long!
Hubert sought the adventure in distant lands. The allure of the unknown inspired him to visit more and more exotic locations for his films. So his way in 1972 led him to Papua New Guinea on the Sepik River and the highlands. The Sepik is the largest river on the island. Along the banks are many tribes who are known for their ritual ceremonies and works of art. Hubert also visited the Asaro Mudmen in the eastern highlands (Goroko) and the people around Mount Hagen, famous for their beautiful ritual body painting and dances. Hubert was fascinated by the so-called "primitive peoples". He spent months with them and returned until 1979 several times. His film "My Friends, the Cannibals" became a great success.
Argentina: Tierra de Fuego and Patagonia
Hubert visited Argentina in the early 1970s. His adventurous journey took him to Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego (Ushuaia). He spent a lot of time there with the farmers and fishermen. His curiosity also led him to the ice glaciers "Perito Moreno Glacier" and its inhabitants, for example the penguins. Hubert loves birds, even if they are not capable of flying. He worked at various ornithological stations around the planet. Hubert also had a seagull for many years and was often with her in German media. Her name was Riffi! Unfortunately, she was killed out of envy. Very sad.
Brazil and the Amazon
Between 1969 and 1981 Hubert visited Brazil and South America many times. In 1972 he made a film about the Indians in the Amazon. Back then, the natives were not always friendly. It was a dangerous journey. Often times, it was only under difficult circumstances that he escaped serious injury and death. Even so, most of the peoples of this huge stream of water are well remembered. He learned from these people how to live in the jungle, how to live in harmony with nature. It was a great lesson for his subsequent expeditions to other continents!
During the sixties and seventies Hubert traveled to Africa many times. There he made documentary films about the different tribes and their rites. But he made also fascinating animal documentaries together with Bernhard Grzimek, a famous veterinarian, zoologist, animal rights activists and ethologist in Germany.
The list of visited countries is long: Egypt, Angola, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea, Cameroon, Kenya, Congo, Liberia, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Tunisia and Uganda.
He had many adventures there. The sixties and seventies were very different from today. Unfortunately, there are very few photos / negatives of these unique experiences, because my husband used to make slides, but in 1993 all came lost.
Hubert often traveled to Morocco in the sixties and seventies. He visited the ancient cities of the "Kingdom of the West", Marrakech, Casablanca, Fez, Souss, Atlas and Rif, and captured the oriental atmosphere on his documentaries. But he also made great films on the Atlantic Meseta and of course in the Sahara. He lived with Berbers and nomads to understand their everyday life.
Oceania - South Seas
Oceania, the South Pacific - the epitome of paradise! And Hubert has fulfilled his dream of paradise! He made many visits to the islands in the Pacific between the 1960s and 1980s. He often lived there for several months; sometimes on land, but very often on a sailing ship. He flew from island to island in the mail planes, and sometimes he used a seaplane.
Every expedition was an adventure and took him to every corner of the fascinating island world in the Pacific.
Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia, Cook Islands, Solomon Islands, Nauru, Yap, Tonga, Samoa, Fiji, Vanuatu, Tuvalu, Palau, Tahiti, Bora-Bora, Moorea, Easter Islands ...
Hubert met friendly people everywhere. There were seldom problems. He also made the acquaintance of the patriarchs and chiefs.
In 1981 Hubert was invited by the King of Tonga, Taufa Tupou IV, to make a documentary about the king and his empire. It was a very special experience for my husband.
Hubert Matysek visited the King of Tonga, Taufa Tupou IV
Hubert fell in love with the Himalayan region in the late 1960s. He had been particularly impressed by the state of Nepal. He returned countless times. Nepal became his second hOMe! His expeditions took him across the country; the Kathmanu Valley, western Nepal with the Annapurna region and also Mustang, eastern Nepal (Namche Bazaar / Thenpoche, Mount Everest base camp1) and the Terai (southern Nepal).
Hubert was particularly interested in culture. Officially, Nepal is a Hindu country. However, the two main religions Hinduism and Buddhism are closely interwoven and many Nepalese see themselves as followers of both religions. The country has always had a strong religious and cultural character. Religion is also closely involved in everyday life in Nepal. This can be seen not only in the abundance of temples of all sizes and shapes, shrines and statues that can be found on almost every corner, but also in the people who wear religious amulets and tikas (red marks) on their foreheads, who often stop for short prayers at shrines and temples and diligently make offerings. Hubert already had many local friends in Nepal back then. This opened many doors for him to unique experiences. He participated in many festivals that tourists never see. So also a monastery inauguration of a little boy. It was a very special atmosphere and Hubert felt the energy that emanated from the boy and the ceremony. The lights couldn't be seen at that moment. It was only when he later developed the photos that his feeling was confirmed: There were powerful spirit lights everywhere. The longer the ceremony lasted, the more lights formed around the boy. There were faces, dragons ... What powerful magic!
Toraja land on the island of Sulawesi - Indonesia
Hubert also explored the rock tombs in Toraja Land on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. An unsafe project, because the locals were very suspicious towards strangers. In order to win the Toraja's favor, Hubert lived in the neighborhood for many months before he was accepted into the village.
One day the tribal elders took him to the sacred rock tombs. A very special moment for my husband, the adventurer and explorer ...
Pulau Komodo – Indonesia
At the beginning of the 1980s, Hubert visited the small Sunda island of Komodo. He made a documentary film about the notorious Komodo dragons, those primordial animals from long past days
West New Guinea - Irian Jaya - Indonesia
Hubert loved New Guinea. The journeys to this island were among his most beautiful expeditions, which he has made throughout his life.
West New Guinea is politically part of Indonesia, but culturally it has a quite different picture from the rest of the islands of the multi-national state. Hubert visited the area many times between 1972 and 1991. Unfortunately, the slide shots of the seventies are no longer in his possession and could not be used here. His last expeditions (1990 and 19919) led him once again to the Dani-, Lani- and Yali People in the Baliem Valley and to the Asmat people (Casuarina Coast, Brazza, ...), where he supported a project for children.
photo impressions from the land of Asmat People
photo impressions from the land of Dani, Lani and Yali People from the Balim Valley
It was night. Thousands of people were on the road, in trance, on the way to the huge limestone cave, where the temple of the god Murugan is located. Hubert and I will never forget this atmosphere, the sound of the ritualistic prayers, the beaten drums with the driving rhythm, the smell of camphor, the incense. We were right in the middle of it, in the middle of the celebrating crowd. We were part of them. We will never forget their chants, screams and courage. Likewise the smell and the ground on which we stood. Fruits, plants soaked in milk and holy powder. We saw women full of humility roll themselves on the ground for miles to the temple. Men and women with little spears and hooks that pierced their bodies. Others carried the heavy kavadis or simply carried pots of holy cow's milk. Family and friends then led devotees up the stairs (272!) To the main grotto of the caves, where they offered more prayers. We were with them for three days and two nights. The nights were very mysterious, but the days were just electrifying. Some scenes will stay in our memory forever:
For example, those incredibly expressive eyes of a man when a giant spear was stuck through his mouth. Or the really "crazy" believers who had hundreds of butcher hooks in their backs and ran around like horses and were pulled back by others. Madness! And all of this at the glowing midday. But some of them weren't strong enough and gave up. Remarkable: no blood ever flowed. All believers had lived sattvik for weeks. Here are some photos of the Tamil celebrations. I took the photos while Hubert was making a great documentary.
OM * Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya * Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya* OM