Behind the Lights - Matt Moran

Images elevate athletic movement in this British photographer's visual pursuit

Movement leads to an exploration of ourselves and our surroundings, but also of visual creativity. The lens of this British photographer is an experimental laboratory where his work often intersects with sports. Moran’s gallery is a flow of sensations and hues elevated by movement, and vice versa; a lengthy, ongoing journey between echoes of legendary photographers and contemporary, sometimes even anticipatory, style choices.

“I’ve always felt photography around me. It’s something I’ve always been interested in and developed over time, especially in my college days when I could travel, surround myself with people with similar tastes, and discover many different print techniques. Magnum photographers were the first I was inspired by, as well as contemporary American classics, such as Alec Soth. As for sports, I played rugby when I was young, then moved to London and took up cycling. During the pandemic, I began running a lot in the Devon countryside with my brother. Over the years, I’ve been an assistant for several fashion photographers, so during those runs, I got the idea to connect artistic-fashion photography to running and other sports I love, like cycling. As a kid, I spent hours watching the Tour de France on TV…”

Exploration is about details and curiosity, Matt explains. In a great sporting event, significant details always go unnoticed. In a great athlete, there is always an aesthetic and narrative key that no one has found. His images tell this tale through fragments of a futuristic running culture, an uncharacteristic side to cycling, and a limitless celebration of movement.

“Working for other photographers has given me the confidence to approach different styles. I like to blur, use flash and distinctive elements, angles and colors. My photos are an accumulation of everything that inspires me, and I think it’s somewhat liberating not to be tied to an immovable aesthetic. Every project and event determines my aesthetic direction. Oftentimes, I don’t even have a brief; I simply react to what’s in front of me. I think everything around performance is intriguing: the lights, the starting gun, the tech, and the little details that only a few notice… Getting under the skin of each athlete; performance and scenarios are exciting.”

The Glasgow World Cycling Championships, Rory Leonard’s tests, the London Marathon, Hoka, and wander, and Dosnoventa: Moran’s creative flow touches on sports on so many different levels; it is nurtured and empowered by it, and allows him to waltz between reportage and artistic-fashion invention, in part thanks to his meticulous postproduction effort.

“I’ve always been exposed to the fashion world, and I find its influence on sports imagery positive, especially from a photographic point of view. A lot of my personal work has led to collaborations with brands – I feel the time is right for brands to open up to different photographic perspectives. Everything seems connected somehow, and I try to have the same approach for all projects. A short while ago, I shot the Great North Run in Newcastle, where I live with my girlfriend. That project led to a commissioned work on the Night of the 10k PB, a fanzine, and finally a shoot in Japan for and wander… I love to experience and share my work as a scrapbook, where postproduction plays a key role. So much of my work comes after shooting, and I really enjoy laboring over color gradations, the treatment of each shot, and the print process.”

“I would love to photograph the Olympics in Paris,” Moran concludes. He tells us about his present and future, split between long runs in the north of England, where he covers 50 miles (80 kilometers) each week, and shoots around the globe, “And I’d love to follow an athlete for a long-term project, like during the lead-up to a major event. I’m intrigued by the idea of working with a young talent and watching them become a star. UTMB (Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc) and running culture in Kenya are two other things that fascinate me. I also want to run the London Marathon in under 2 hours 40…. We’ll see what happens!”


LVMH X Paris 2024, French savoir-faire means sport

LVMH's sponsorship of the upcoming Olympics is just the latest leg of a long journey where luxury is synonymous with victory

Victory, like the production of an object, is the result of an inexhaustible repetition of movements. And every athlete, just like a craftsman, is the creator of a continuous succession of actions devoted to triumph. In ‘Artisans of All Victories,’ the concept coined by LVMH that links the luxury group to the sporting imaginary, athletes and artisans share more than just a common role. According to this creative-competitive vision, sportsmen and luxury masters share a flair, a thought and an innate as well as learned talent for creating dreams.

‘The art of creating dreams’ represents the group’s mission in the universe of the XXXIII Olympic Games, the third Parisian chapter after 1900 and 1924. And exactly a century later, the Olympics represent a new and renewed opportunity to exhibit to the world the value and quality of the French capital savoir faire.

The same savoir faire that Luis Vuitton and the entire LVMH group share, and which they’ve decided to sublimate with a unique sponsorship. 150 million euros, three maisons-LV, Dior, and Berluti-as well as Sephora and Chaumet, with the beauty brand being promoted to official partner of the Olympic torchlight run and the historic French jewelry company being chosen to produce the medals.

This sponsorship makes the group and its brands a bridge between fashion and sports, confirming a special connection that is rooted not only in a growing trend, but also in a unity of purpose – artisans and athletes, both engaged in a constant and irrepressible quest for perfection.

The athletes selected by LVMH for Paris 2024 embody the value and spirit of the luxury group, and are summed up by the title ‘artisans of all victories,’ representing the luxury that is synonymous with victory, dreams, perseverance and tenacity. Léon Marchand, Mélanie de Jesus dos Santos, Enzo Lefort, and Pauline Déroulède have become the perfect faces to convey the bond between the French group and the sporting element. They are the ambassadors of a mentality that step by step, leaves everything behind with the sole purpose of pursuing the greatest results.

The same great achievements that Luis Vuitton has been coasting for more than 30 years. Because the brand’s relationship with sports and its symbols has spanned history, marking the most coveted moment for every athlete: reaching a trophy. Football, rugby, sailing, tennis, basketball and Formula 1: V for victory is also V for Vuitton. Trophy trunks made by the French brand have long encapsulated the entire essence of effort, sweat, sacrifice, suffering, joy and recognition that are part of every winner’s journey. And for the brand born in 1884 in Asnières, which is inextricably linked to the experience of travel, celebrating the most iconic moment in sports seems natural.

The Ballon d’Or and the last four football World Cups (2010, 2014, 2018, and 2022) have traveled in an LV-branded trunk, just like two of the last rugby World Cups (2015, 2023) and, since 2020, the Larry O’Brien NBA trophy.

But Luis Vuitton’s history in celebrating sporting triumphs has far more distant origins. Indeed, in 1983 the French brand sponsored the selection regatta between the America’s Cup winning team and its challengers: the Luis Vuitton Cup. The luxury maison has always looked with enthusiasm to the nautical tradition, collaborating with the America’s Cup itself over the years to create the iconic trunk of the world’s oldest international trophy.

The trophy cases handcrafted by the artisans of the Asnières atelier, with a technical and creative effort that can sometimes exceed 400 hours of work, have always been customized according to the type of cup they were intended to contain. One of the most iconic examples is undoubtedly the Davis Cup: in 2019, the trophy was presented at the final round of the men’s tennis World Cup inside a circular trunk covered in the unmistakable Monogram Mocassar canvas and embellished with numerous leather details. Equipped with a giant base, the chest is one of the most iconic testimonies to the Parisian brand’s mastery of enshrining the symbols of sporting success. In tennis, Luis Vuitton has also made the trophy cases for Roland Garros and, more recently, the Australian Open.

The French fashion house’s universal experience also led it to collaborate in the world of motorsport, first with the 24 Hours of Le Mans and then with Formula 1.

In the world of sports, Luis Vuitton’s role is not just tied to the epithet “keeper of victory”. Because in the vision of the maison, as well as in its DNA, the value and importance of travel are ingrained. Even in the sporting element, the exaltation of a journey takes prominence by celebrating that set of stories and moments that go beyond the one component of triumph. Rivalry, strength, style, legend, evolution. In the shots and campaigns of the French brand there is all this and more.

Some tangible examples are Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi who on the eve of their last World Cup play their last and most important chess match, sealing the greatest antagonism of our time, or Carlos Alcaraz who in a marriage of fashion and style exhibits his baggage of equipment and memorabilia crossing the boundaries of tennis, becoming the symbol of evolution and a journey just beginning. From those destined to become legends to those who are already the face of sports epics, such as Lebron James.

Any fusion of sports and luxury is, for Luis Vuitton, an exaltation of style. A style that is not only aesthetic, but also athletic: the savoir faire that every sportsman holds. Like Eileen Gu, freestyle skier who was chosen by the fashion house to tell the imagery of the iconic Luis Vuitton Twist.

LVMH x Paris 2024 marks not only the largest economic commitment to support a sporting event for a company, but also the natural evolution of a relationship that for Luis Vuitton has always represented throughout history an intersection of excellence. A crossover celebrated movement after movement in the Asnières atelier exactly as it is on the playing fields around the world.

Credits

IMAGO

Louis Vuitton


Christoph Lohse and FILA, personal origin stories to today’s running culture

The former world-class athlete, now Brand Manager FILA Performance, talks about his own evocative relationship with running

Understanding the direction of a brand is always a complex work of decryption, except in the case of FILA and its equally novel-historical trajectory within the running universe. Passion is a manifest characteristic that helps dissolve any doubt or uncertainty, allowing a company to posit each and every subject onto a pathway of conscious and virtuous design. As in the case of Christoph Lohse, former top runner and now Brand Manager FILA Performance. “In the first German national championship I participated in, I was wearing FILA shoes. That was in 1997, so my connection with this brand is absolute, it goes back to the roots of my passion for running…” Lohse tells the tale of a life born and established as a function of running. A multiple national champion, Lohse defines running as an essential part of his existence, a family passion embraced at an early age and, later, translated both into stellar times, such as an outdoor PB of 1:48.75 on the beloved 800 meters, and a managerial career devoted entirely to the rebirth and progression of an iconic brand such as FILA.

“Running is the reason for everything, it has determined my career and my personal path, and still marks my daily life. I have always been fascinated by the evolution of this culture: in the 1970s, my parents were runners, and they were like outlaws; in the 1990s, running was pure competition; now more and more people call themselves runners… Running has become a form of personal expression,” Lohse continues, demonstrating a keen sensibility and reasoning about the new of running shoes that was unpredictable until recently. “In the past, shoes were almost an accessory, now they are a crucial element for everyone: professionals and amateurs. With FILA, we pursue the democratization of running. I am proud that certain technologies are available to everyone.”

Christoph Lohse, former top runner and now Brand Manager FILA Performance.

And the democratization of running inevitably comes through the knowledge and intentions of the key players involved. It is no coincidence, says Lohse, that the team tasked with breathing new life into the FILA running department includes numerous former athletes. It is no coincidence that a monumental narrative intertwined with legendary athletes rises again from the true epicenters of running culture 2.0, the urban communities, and a distinctive stylistic research. “With FILA we are in the middle of a journey. We are looking for the right balance between functionality, style, and brand DNA. It is impossible to make the right decisions without having your fingers on the pulse of contemporary running culture. And you also need to keep the iconic designs and colors of our heritage in mind. I was fortunate enough to experience running as a professional athlete; Now I have to continually stay up-to-date on the changes and additions to this universe, but that’s not a problem. Passion makes you love what you do. When I’m drinking my coffee on a Sunday afternoon, all I’m thinking about is FILA and running….”

And we’ve collected some of those thoughts, diving deeper into the specifics of the relationship between Lohse and FILA, its present and future ramifications, as well as the new direction of a brand destined to remain a fundamental part of running culture.

FILA’s relationship with running began in the early 1990s and involved some iconic athletes, such as Kenyan marathon runners Moses Tanui and Margaret Okayo. How important is this kind of legacy to the brand’s contemporary vision?

Our partnerships with iconic athletes like Moses Tanui and Margaret Okayo are foundational to FILA’s evolving vision. This rich heritage is a constant reminder of the brand’s commitment to blending innovation with tradition. It fuels our passion for developing cutting-edge products that resonate with the ongoing transformations in running, ensuring that our legacy and enduring pursuit for excellence lives on in every stride taken by modern athletes.

There’s a deep connection to the past in your products. The new FILA ASTATINE, for example, is a tribute to a major innovation of the brand, the carbon plate. What role has technological progress played in FILA’s history and what role does it continue to play?

Since FILA took its first steps as a performance brand in 1972 revolutionizing the fabrics in the product for Tennis athletes and mountain climbing, innovation was always in the forefront. For FILA, the legacy of technological progress, epitomized by innovations like the carbon plate in our ASTATINE, is a testament to our relentless pursuit of excellence. We continue to leverage technology to revolutionize sports apparel and equipment, pushing boundaries to enhance athletic performance. Our commitment to pioneering advancements solidifies our place in sports history and paves the way for future breakthroughs, ensuring athletes experience unprecedented comfort and capability.

In the SS23 collection you introduce a new generation of running shoes. What are the characteristics that define them? And, according to FILA, what are the characteristics that define the new generation of global runners?

For the SS23 collection, it was our bringing industry-leading technologies into our running collection. Therefore, we decided to use cutting-edge midsole materials such as Peba-based midsole foams for Astatine and Argon. This combined with advanced upper materials and innovative midsole geometries we created a new generation of running shoes providing outstanding energy return and allowing effortless performance.

Your Sports Performance design and development team have stated that they want to give the best possible experience to all athletes, from beginners to the more serious. What are the secrets to achieving such an ambitious goal?

The most important ingredient to achieve such an ambitious goal is drive. Besides having a talented team working together seamlessly, extensive insights from consumers and athletes, access to advanced technology, personal drive, and passion for running from every team member at FILA are key to our success. The combination of everything mentioned above results in products that cover the needs of every runner.

The running scene is increasingly populated and related to urban communities. What does it mean for you to involve, for example, a crew from Rome in the recent event that took place in the Eternal City?

Collaborating with the Runners of Rome crew symbolizes FILA’s commitment to intertwining our brand with the pulse of local running communities. As newcomers or rather as a come-back brand we know that it’s extremely important for us to be humble to the fact that our products are new to people so we want to start our journey with the passionate local community to gain insights directly from the urban running scene and to craft products and initiatives that resonate at a grassroots level. It’s a manifestation of our dedication to celebrating and nurturing the diverse and vibrant tapestry of running cultures that populate cities around the world.

What future steps are you envisioning and what are the goals you want to achieve? Will the FILA running universe connect with new professional athletes or will it continue to focus on crews and collective celebration?

FILA’s future in the running universe is focused on continual innovation and fostering communal running passions. When we are ready we plan to collaborate with professional athletes to elevate performance standards while maintaining our emphasis on community engagement and collective celebration. Our goal is to create a harmonious ecosystem where elite athleticism and communal passion coexist, driving inclusive growth, and propagating our commitment to every runner’s journey.


A Georgian Myth , Kazbbegi trail with techunter

TECHUNTER takes us to the Kazbegi Mountain Marathon and the Georgian outdoor universe

The TECHUNTER team ventured into the mountains of Georgia, specifically the region around mount Kazbek, to explore its surroundings, history, geography and the legendary Kazbegi Mountain Marathon. Along with runners and friends Jodie and Giuliano, the team took on the 10km and 30km distances of this breathtaking skyrace. They also spent some quality time in the mountains prior to the race and decided to share their experience with us. Enjoy.

Mount Kazbek is a stratovolcano. It consists of many layers (strata) of lava and other material that comes out of a volcano during eruptions, and it usually cools and hardens before spreading too far from its source. This is a reason for the steep profile of such mountains. The summit of the great mountain was first climbed in 1868 by D. W. Freshfield, A. W. Moore, and C. Tucker of the Alpine Club, with the guide François Devouassoud. They were followed by female Russian alpinist Maria Preobrazhenskaya, who made the climb nine times starting in 1900.

The Mountain is situated in the middle of the Greater Caucasus. Standing 5054 meters above sea level, Mount Kazbek is the 6th tallest in the whole Great Caucasus and is the 2nd tallest volcanic-type peak in the Caucasus, outmatched only by the mighty Mount Elbrus. Mount Kazbek is the 5th highest ultra-prominent peak (1.500 m. above its surroundings) in all of Europe and is taller than any other peak in the continent, except the Great Caucasus mountains. It is located to the west of Stepantsminda town (formerly known as Kazbegi) and together with a nearby Gergeti Trinity Church dominates the landscape.

The Georgian name for the mountain is “Mkinvartsveri”, meaning, not directly, “the Glacier Peak” and in a language of local Nakh people – “Molten Mount”.

The mountain finds itself a center for many legends from all around the world. One of the most famous ones is of Prometheus. As the story goes, after giving the fire to mankind, Zeus ordered Prometheus to be chained to Mount Caucasus, where a raven was sent to peck at his liver. It is not confirmed whether Prometheus was chained to Mount Kazbek exactly, as authors refer to a peak in the Caucasus without naming the exact place, yet there is an interesting parallel to Georgian legend, where another god-like being – Amirani, challenged God and after losing the battle was chained to what Georgians call Mkinvartsveri – modern Kazbek.

Within the mountain itself lies probably the most mysterious place in all of Georgia – Betlemi cave. There is a legend among the local peoples, that when Mongols invaded Georgia, young warrior-men rushed with horses to the cave to hide the most important treasures of the country. Willing to keep the secret at all costs, men took their own lives. The cave, closed by an iron gate, would be accessed only by the one of pure heart, when a chain tied to the mountain revealed itself, which granted access to the cave. Another connection to Prometheus. The cave is even related to Abraham’s tent and the Golden fleece, which according to the legend was hidden in Colchis (modern day Georgia). This is where Jason and the Argonauts set out to look for it.

Kazbegi Mountain Marathon is an annual skyrace held in Georgia in September. The marathon is included in the UTMB® World Series Qualifiers, certified by the International Trail Running Association (ITRA) and courses through the Caucasus Mountains in the northern part of the country. The starting and finishing points are in the town of Kazbegi located on the historical military road. The Kazbegi Mountain Marathon is both the largest as well as the first mountain racing event held in the Caucasus.

Over the years the race offered different routes: 4km Fun run (elevation gain 300m), 10km Trail run (e.g. 900m), 15km Skyrace (e.g. 1,300m), 30km Extreme distance (with elevation gain of 2,500m, which requires pre-qualification for each runner).

The marathon is organized by TrailLab and attracts athletes from USA, Germany, England, France, Italy, Japan, Germany, Kazakhstan, Israel, Kenya, the toughest local runners, as well as runners from the immediate neighboring Armenia, Azerbaijan, Turkey and Russia. The breathtaking Extreme route takes the elite participants from the Gergeti village at the 2000m altitude through the stunning Gergeti glacier up to the Bethlemi Hut and weather station at the 3700m of elevation, where mountaineers take refuge before summiting Kazbek itself.

This first and the main accent is going straight from the starting line to the top, which means you’re getting 95% of your altitude gain during the first 10km. If you were fortunate enough to reach the weather station within the cut-off time, a long downhill awaits you from the peak to the valley below. Roughly, the race is like you attempting to climb the Kazbek, at a running pace, and at the base camp you realise you forgot all of your mountaineering equipment and swiftly run back.

The race was a culmination of the TECHUNTER team exploration of the Kazbegi region, and their athletes were fortunate enough to face all of the skyrace’s high-altitude difficulties and successfully finish this adventure. The entire journey was portrayed through Ivan Dzhatiev’s lens.

Text by Gianmarco Pacione

Content creators: Techunter Magazine


Behind the Lights – Tana Wizard

Photography, fashion, streetball. The life of a creative from the Rising Sun

The eye, the wrist, the fingertips move towards the Far East, towards the Rising Sun. In the metropolis where neon lights and cherry trees, centuries-old traditions and hypermodernism merge, there are a series of constantly evolving basketball enclaves.

They are the communities of streetball, of basketball that goes beyond the flavor of the asphalt to become national culture, to marry the fashion world. They are the communities of Tana Wizard: an inspired mind capable of intertwining these parallel tracks, entrusting the Game with its research and its daily commitment.

“I first started playing basketball for fun when I was in elementary school. I wasn’t really into video games, so I used to play various sports outdoors, and basketball was one of them. The more I played, the more hooked I got, but there wasn’t a basketball hoop near my house; so I had to make my own. Re-shaped metal hangers into a circular shape, bunched several of them together, attached it to a wooden board, and then hung it off a telephone pole. My house was on a hill, so it was difficult to practice dribbling in the street. If I fumbled the ball, I had to sprint down the hill to chase it; which actually forced me to get better dribbling. After graduating high school I entered an art school. I didn’t play for the school team, but outside of school I continued to play in 3-on-3 tournaments with my friends. That’s where I met FAR EAST BALLERS, the first Japanese streetball crew, and they invited me to tryout for their team. That’s where I was introduced to streetball, and the beginning of my addiction to this game. Around that same time I first learned of AND 1 MIXTAPE. I started to always keep a ball around with me, even at school. I wanted to spread streetball around Japan, so I also started FREESTYLE dribbling and began performing at big events as well as on TV. My name ‘Wizard’ was given by streetball MC legend, DUKE TANGO, during the multiple AND 1 Japan Games that I played in. Unfortunately, I started suffering a chronic disease and in order to spread the streetball culture even more I started SOMECITY in 2007 with my friends and ballaholic in 2012. By 2013, my chronic disease had gotten worse to the point where I couldn’t play anymore, so that’s when I directed my focus to photography”

The ideals and cornerstones underlying these various projects are portrayed in Tana’s photographs. Like SOMECITY, a transversal confederation of street basketball, which involves and unites all the major Japanese prefectures.

“Japanese streetball did not have an established culture; a big reason for that was because Japan didn’t have an environment for people to play. Parks with basketball hoops were scarce, and most parks wouldn’t even allow kids to play around with a ball. When we started organizing events we had a difficult time getting approval to set up our hoops. So naturally we started to look for places that would allow us to ball, hoop or no hoop, and we would lay our own court. As we went through this, we came up with our style of playing wherever we could; ultimately leading to us to laying a court inside a night club for SOMECITY. After starting SOMECITY, we realized that it wasn’t enough for us to travel around different cities; we needed local people living in those cities to also organize and spread the event. Currently we have over 30 cities running the event, organized by locals, and as a result we have been able to meet many ‘basketball-crazies’ over the years. Internationally we’ve held the event in China, and we’ve also held an international event in Japan called ULTRABALL, where we invited teams from around the world to play games in the middle of Shibuya”

The ballaholic brand lands powerfully not only in the Far East, but also in the Old Continent and beyond the Pacific, in the American cradle of James Naismith. The recent collaborations with ASICS and Kevin Couliau demonstrate this, together with the countless certificates of esteem and the increasing collective interest for a brand that represents much more than just aesthetics.

“Pre-streetball, I never imagined myself wearing baggy shorts that hung below my knees or oversize shirts for playing basketball. This is because Japan has a ‘school-team’ culture, where everyone typically wears similar clothes, and that was all I knew. So once I discovered streetball, I discovered new styles; hooping in the same shorts you walk around with, everybody at the courts having their own style, keeping your uniform on after games, wearing 2 pairs of short on top of each other, cutting the sleeves of T-shirts, wearing that cut portion of the T sleeve on your head. Even saw someone triple layering socks in NY. Also, this was the first time I learned about folding shorts at the waist. Back then, most sports shops didn’t sell basketball shorts that had pockets, because there was a hard line between sports and daily life. I was drawn to the streetball style of merging the two worlds. So our concept at ballaholic is clothes that you can wear for daily life as well as hooping, which is why our shorts have pockets. A big turning point for me was when I was diagnosed with my chronic disease, and that is when I transferred all of my energy and passion that I had for playing basketball, to ballaholic. The more time I put in for creating, the better my work got, the more people enjoyed the clothes, which kept me motivated to the point where I didn’t have time to stop. I also learned about photography during that process, and I think it was fortunate that I learned how to use a camera; I found a new medium to express my thoughts and creativity”

A community with a double soul, made of sweat and playground, of urban contexts and creativity. A community that prefers terms such as ideology and diffusion to profit and capitalism.

“SOMECITY is an event to spread streetball, and to build that streetball culture within each city. ballaholic acts as sponsors for these events by preparing the jerseys. ballaholic is a brand and an ideology. We want people of all ages, gender, ethnicity to enjoy playing basketball. SOMECITY is an event that embraces that ideology. When we ask ourselves “what is streetball?” our answer is “streetball is the ultimate level of play”; “Play” is the state of mind where you are completely immersed into what you are doing. You can’t see what’s going around you. And not because of external motives, simply because you enjoy it. We want everyone who likes the game of basketball, whether they currently play or not, to incorporate basketball into their daily lives. Now we’ve finally settled down from the ASICS collab, so now we’re directing our focus on ballaholic TOKYO’s (our shop) 4 year anniversary as well as a collaboration project with Kevin Couliau and Asphalt Chronicles. We are also in the testing phase of starting a service of building basketball courts with ballaholic designs for private homes; we are planning to launch some time this year. Due to COVID, events are either being cancelled or limited (no audiences), parks are being shut down, and it’s pretty boring now; but we’re making the best of the situation and doing things that we’re only able to do now! We want to continue doing things that excite us, including spreading globally”

Credits

Tana Wizard


Youth in the Mediterranean: The Rowers

Maturing in the water, not only as athletes, thanks to the right leader

Glauco Canalis’ reportage has the flavor of fatigue and personal growth. It’s a photographic journey on the threshold of the Mediterranean sea: on the waves painted by vascular arms, by a coach-mentor and by teenagers looking for a reason to improve as athletes, as men. Good vision.

This story is an extension of my ongoing research on youth in the Mediterranean. This time the focus is on the rowers: a tribe of blossoming teenagers building their bodies on land and shaping their minds in the sea waters.

The coach, Diego, is one of a kind. A Pirate-like character, long hair and narrow goatee, aka “il Dragone”. His methods are spartan but always uplifting and encouraging. He’s more interested in the content of his practices than in the form of them. He managed to raise ferocious athletes who gained gold medals nationally and internationally.

This photographic series aims to highlight the work dynamics within a team, but also the friendship and connection created by the group, by these young people, in order to achieve a goal that goes beyond the simple result of the competition: the construction of the various personality, of conscious men. A construction based on individual effort and mutual trust.

This story wants to celebrate the beauty of human maturity and the importance of having good leaders in a crucial and delicate moment such as adolescence.

Credits

Ph & Text by Glauco Canalis
IG @glaucocanalis
glaucocanalis.com

Creative Direction Giuliana Minaldi


test

The new Netflix series is an ode to independent wrestling and its irrational stars

How many of you are familiar with the glittering WWE violence? And how many of you have witnessed the dynamic rise of AEW up the wrestling food chain? Probably all of you have watched, if only for a moment, a live broadcast of these two entertainment powerhouses. And who among you has ever witnessed an OVW, Ohio Valley Wrestling pay-per-view? Probably no one. Because this independent promotion is the historically little brother of the great American wrestling majors, a purist’s paradise, a hotbed of talent that has created celebrities like John Cena, Randy Orton and Batista, but it’s also a business poised on the precipice of failure.

The economic resurrection of this scrappy, yet fascinating promotion is the focus of the Netflix series ‘Wrestlers.’ The advent of the two businessmen Matt Jones and Craig Greenberg allows us to discover a parallel universe, written and directed by the sole (impressive) imagination of former professional wrestler Al Snow: a universe where heritage matters more than profit, where credibility and inspiration consciously snub the laws of the market, and where dozens of athletes dream of making a living from their art, often colliding with a harsh reality composed of second jobs and economic struggles. ‘Wrestlers’ is an ode to independent wrestling and its heroes: human beings populated by demons, emotional fractures, family contradictions and controversial pasts, who in the adrenaline of the three ropes manage to find answers to even the most complex existential questions.

Greg Whitley directs a magical series that allows us to explore the tumultuous identities of performers in search of their gimmick and their future, as well as the great beauty of a discipline that is too often undervalued. An art form that demands scientific timing and acting qualities. An endless novel that seeks only the viewer’s reaction and loyalty. A theater of pain, shaped by acrobatic hits and performances that are anything but superficial‘Wrestlers’ is a contemporary glossary of ambition, sacrifice, failure and, above all, irrational passion.The transversal passion that drives men and women to challenge their bodies and minds in order to temporarily step into the shoes of superheroes. Even in front of 30 people. Even for a handful of dollars. That’s why ‘Wrestlers’ makes its way right into our Watchlist.

Credits
Netflix

Photo Credits
Gianmarco Pacione