Sumo offers a unique behind-the-scenes view into the secret and fascinating world of sumo, a living breathing showcase of ancient Japan.
Sumo is one of the oldest sports in the world, stretching back over 2,000 years. Within the Japanese establishment, there exists a great sense of pride that so little about the sport has changed in the past millennium. Wrestlers still live by a strict code, in and outside of the dojo, and to commit to the sport requires complete devotion from an early age. As Japan has surged forwards into modernity, this fascinating corner of culture has remained anchored to the past.
Gaining behind-the-scenes access is notoriously difficult as sumo is a sport shrouded in secrecy. A full year was spent by the author knocking on doors and filling out endless paperwork before he was eventually granted permission to chronicle the lives of wrestlers; a world where history, culture, pride, and athleticism combine. Sumo documents the strict codes to which wrestlers adhere. The photographs bring to life the stringent dietary and training regimes which require enormous dedication and the many unique practices which make sumo fascinating – a living, breathing showcase of ancient Japan.
This book offers a unique set of over 95 photographs that are sequenced rhythmically and poetically in order to give the armchair viewer an insight into not only the drama and excitement of the tournaments, but also the dedication of the wrestlers and the sacrifices they make in order to have a chance to compete at the highest level.
About the Author
Lord K2 (David Sharabani) is a London-born award-winning photographer with a huge passion for sports and art. In documenting sumo culture in Japan, he has been granted rare permission to photograph the wrestlers in their stables and in the Kokugikan Stadium. He has also photographed for the World Muay Thai Council and for the International Federation of Muay Thai Amateur. His work has been featured on the front cover of Asian Geographic, as well as in numerous online and offline news media.
"A dynamic, colourful portrait of the traditions and rituals of Japan and the wrestlers who are held in the highest esteem in their country.” —The I Paper
“Photographer Lord K2’s new book showcases the glory and sacrifice of sumo wrestling... these images allow us a peak into a world of ancient tradition and culture, one that has stood the test of time despite all the allures of modernity. Images of wrestlers out and about in the streets or queuing at restaurants reveal this curious clash, while those of the training ring bring home the sheer athleticism of these performers – not to mention their remarkable flexibility." —Geographical