Mari Shibata


Bashoiri


︎ nowness.com/

Documentaries about sumo wrestlers obsessing on their distinct physique - namely its upkeep and action inside the ring - are all too common.

Instead, I turned the lens on how their rank relates to their rule-based lifestyle and its affect on public image – most visible during the Bashoiri, their arrival to tournament venues, deliberately designed to be within close distance from the public.

Deliberately without a voiceover, this film is a study observing varying body language, attitudes and reception of high ranking sumos, whilst those of lower rank walk through crowds unnoticed. The range of Japanese kimonos on display, vehicles they arrive in, as well as relationships between the sumos and their tsukibito (assistants) – all defined by their performance across five tournaments a year.





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